The Special Investigating Unit’s (SIU’s) report into the Digital Vibes scandal reveals that former minister Dr Zweli Mkhize blames his messenger for Digital Vibes paying for repairs at his home.
Digital Vibes is run by associates of Mkhize — Tahera Mather and his former personal assistant Naadhira Mitha — and was awarded an irregular communications contract through a closed tender process and scored payments amounting to R150m. ADVERTISING
The report also highlighted what has been previously reported that Digital Vibes paid for repairs at his property amounting to R6,720.
The report stated that “the required services had been identified by the minister’s wife. The particulars on the two invoices reflected the requester of the services as being one ‘Mkhize’ and a cellular phone number was also indicated in the invoices”.
Mkhize had, according to the report, indicated to the SIU that he had not requested these services nor did the indicated cellular number belong to him or to an account registered in his name.
“However, the indicated cellular number, in eNatis records, is linked to vehicles registered in the name of the minister,” the report stated.
It also indicate that Mkhize called that “a messenger, also with the surname ‘Mkhize’, who was in his employ, had subsequently confessed that the cash to pay for the maintenance services that had been provided by the minister’s housekeeper, had been stolen by him”.
“When payment for the services became due, the messenger had approached Ms Mitha who, according to the messenger, paid the R6,720 to the service provider (an affidavit in this regard was also provided by the messenger),” the report stated.
The SIU, however, obtained evidence which indicated that Digital Vibes, and not Mitha, paid for these services.
“During the questioning of the minister, he did not indicate whether he had dismissed the messenger or laid criminal charges against him for this alleged theft. Therefore, the veracity of the explanation of the messenger is, in the view of the SIU in doubt,” the report stated.