Open letter to South Africa’s students‚ universities and government‚ represented by Minister in the .
A TOTAL of 39 senior staff members of the Eastern Cape health department are to have their March salaries frozen after failing to make statutory disclosures of their financial interests.
Health spokesperson Sizwe Kupelo said yesterday the officials included chief directors, directors and managers of tertiary and regional hospitals.
Public service regulations stipulate that by no later than April 30 of each year they had to submit a disclosure of all their "registrable" interests.
The 39 staffers had not yet submitted their disclosures for 2008-09, due at the end of April last year, Kupelo said.
"For this reason they will have their March salaries frozen. This will be reversed only when they submit their financial disclosures.
"This step is part of the department's commitment to clean up its finances and ensure clean governance."
He said non-disclosure meant there was a risk that officials in key positions could award contracts to companies they had links to.
The officials, some of whom were in "strategic" posts, needed to set an example, Kupelo said.
The disclosure requirement was an attempt to develop high ethical standards in the public service.
The freeze is the latest in a series of anti-corruption moves by the department's recently appointed superintendent general, Dr Siva Pillay.
Earlier this month the department suspended eight officials linked to a multi-million rand scam. It has also vowed to come down heavily on staff and companies involved in irregularly awarded contracts. - Sapa