The North West Department of Health has suspended four senior officials over allegations of tender irregularities.

Health MEC Madoda Sambatha said two of the officials are directors attached to the Infrastructure Development Technical Support chief directorate, including one director responsible for Infrastructure Planning and another responsible for Infrastructure Delivery.

The directors were suspended on 23 April 2020, due to allegations of irregular payments of departmental funds to service providers arising from a bid for additions and alterations to existing Mmabatho Nursing College, including all related site works.

The principal building agreement for construction works at Mmabatho Nursing College commenced on the 02 November 2015.

It is alleged that the officials within the Infrastructure Development and Technical Support chief directorate facilitated irregular insertion of the “contract price adjustment Provision”, which resulted in the contractor receiving undue enrichment in payments.

“The value estimated on this one amounts to R10 959 472 35, excluding VAT of adjustment/ escalation. This followed a preliminary investigation,” said the MEC at a media briefing on Wednesday.

The other two senior officials, including the department’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and a director responsible for Supply Chain Management (SCM) were also suspended on 8 May 2020, due to allegations of irregularities at SCM arising from a security tender.

“The appointment letter of the successful bidders allegedly contained the prices which materially varied from what those bidders had bid for thus inflating prices and causing the department serious financial loss. The value of the financial loss is not yet know, as investigations are to start after their suspension,” Sambatha said.

The suspensions are intended to allow the department to investigate the allegations, which are of a serious nature.