The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) has welcomed the sentencing of six men for the murder of whistleblower Babita Deokaran and says it will conduct further investigations into alleged corruption, maladministration, fraud, and malpractice related to supply chain management processes at Tembisa Hospital.
Deokaran was a senior health official at the Gauteng Department of Health.
She flagged suspicious payments worth R850-million to shell companies and politicians, among other companies and people, who were service providers at Tembisa Hospital.
The SIU says it supports the efforts of the police, particularly the Hawks, and the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) to trace the mastermind behind Deokaran's murder.
On Tuesday, the Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg sentenced Deokaran's killers to terms of imprisonment, ranging from six to 22 years, after a plea and sentence agreement with the NPA.
In a statement, the SIU hailed Deokaran as a noble public servant and worked with law enforcement agencies, especially the SIU, to stop the abuse of public funds by providing information on ongoing investigations in the health department.
SIU spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago said, "As a senior official in the finance and supply chain management, she provided the SIU with information to assist with investigations relating to the procurement of personal protective equipment (PPE) in the health department and flagged maladministration, fraud and corruption related to the supply chain management processes at the Tembisa Hospital."
Kganyago said the SIU investigation produced significant results and said consequence management was implemented.
He said several senior officials in the health department faced disciplinary action and were dismissed. PPE contracts have been terminated, and money returned to the State.
"Several contracts still need to be adjudicated in the Special Tribunal, like the AngloGold Ashanti Mine Hospital refurbishment for Covid-19 purposes.
"Last week, the health department announced that it had suspended six of the nine officials that were cited in the SIU Report on Tembisa Hospital, while others left the hospital before action could be taken against them," Kganyago added.