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By Citizen Reporter


R4.8bn owing: Small wonder companies refuse to deal with Gauteng health department

The DA is amazed that some companies are still owed money for services rendered in 2010.

The DA said in a statement on Thursday that the Gauteng health department is behind on R2.8 billion owed to 2,093 companies for more than six months, and owes nearly R5 billion in total.

MPL Jack Bloom said this information was revealed by Gauteng health MEC Bandile Masuku in an oral reply to his questions in the Gauteng Legislature on Tuesday.

“Furthermore, 505 companies are owed for more than a year, and the oldest debt dates back to 2010,” he said, expressing astonishment.

Masuku had admitted the total amount of accrued debt stood at R4.8 billion in April at the beginning of the 2019/20 financial year.

“He says that payment plans have been arranged with the largest debtors and all debts would be settled in the next two years.”

This included R1.2 billion owed to the National Health Laboratory Service.

“I am most concerned by this gigantic debt overhang that eats into the current budget and will take a large slice from next year’s budget as well.

“Many jobs are lost because of late payment by government departments, and some companies refuse to deal with the Gauteng health department because of its poor payment record.”

He said progress in the public health sector would only be made once all debts were paid up and all companies paid within the legally required period of 30 days.

(Edited by Charles Cilliers)

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