Digital Vibes Owner Is My Long-Time Buddy

Digital Vibes Owner Is My Long-Time Buddy
Suspended health minister, Zweli Mkhize

His father has been suspended from his health minister job, but sugarcane farmer Dedanimabhunu Mkhize is telling anyone who cares to listen that he didn’t get any money from Digital Vibes.

Digital Vibes scored a R150 million rand communications tender – to among other things – secure Covid-19 update slots on SABC TV for the department of health.

Media speculation has gone into overdrive about the contents of the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) report that President Ramaphosa is mulling over.

Some reports suggest the SIU traced millions of rand from the Digital Vibes tender that found their way into the pockets of Dr. Zweli Mkhize and his family.  

They claim the multi-million rand communication tender awarded to Digital Vibes was a conduit to siphon money from the health department.

Some reports suggest the suspended health minister leaned on department officials to get them to award the tender to the company owned by former colleagues.

Dr. Mkhize denies any wrongdoing, but admits Digital Vibes is owned by “colleagues”.

On Friday Dr. Mkhize’s son, Dedanimabhunu who owns Tusokuhle farm in Pietermaritzburg denied receiving any money from the Digital Vibes tender.

He said he has been friends with Tahera Mather, the owner of Digital Vibes, since 2015.

However, the farmer who seasonally plants vegetables, admitted the friendship did involve “exchanges of money”.

Some reports claim Digital Vibes has been asked to return about R130 million that it was paid by the health department.

Dedanimabhunu dismissed the reported SIU findings, saying the probe was “unprofessional and biased”.

He added: “Frankly, the SIU report relies on media reports – not a tested legal process.

“As an example, I categorically deny ever receiving R3.8 million and this submission in the SIU’s court papers is false.”

Dedanimabhunu complained that he had to learn through a media article that he was being investigated and the SIU was trying to recover R3,8 million that “I have never ever received”.

He added: “I have nothing to hide and would appeal to the SIU to solicit my response to its investigations – it’s the correct thing to do”. 

Ramaphosa this week told reporters that he could not sit on the SIU report forever.