South Africa: North West Department Head Charged Over R470m Brits Hospital Tender

South Africa: North West Department Head Charged Over R470m Brits Hospital Tender

In the latest corruption-related case in the province, the head of the North West health department has been granted a leave of absence after he was arrested on charges related to a R470-million tender to build a hospital. His predecessor also faces criminal charges.

Obakeng Eden Mongale, the former head of the North West public works department and current head of the province’s health department, appeared in the Mahikeng Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, 2 November, in connection with the alleged irregular awarding of a tender worth R470-million to build Brits Hospital in 2008.

Following a brief appearance, Mongale was released on R50,000 bail and ordered to surrender his passport and not to interfere with State witnesses.

He is charged with contravening the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA). It is alleged that in 2008 he awarded an R470-million tender to Ilima Projects and Tsoga Developers to build Brits Hospital.

A probe by the Serious Commercial Crime Unit revealed that two companies were awarded the tender without meeting requirements.

According to North West National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Henry Mamothame, Ilima Projects was purportedly placed in provisional liquidation in 2010. As a result the contract was terminated.

He said a new company was appointed to complete the construction of the hospital. When the contract was terminated the department had spent more than R57-million.

“The new contractor had to carry out two major remedial works amounting to more than R4-million, which resulted in the extension of time…