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North West health boss Thabo Lekalakala is still in his job‚ despite a recommendation by the provincial legislature that he be suspended immediately for his role in a premature R30-million payment to a Gupta-linked company.

Lekalakala is so far the only man who may be taking the fall for the multi-million rand advance payment to Mediosa‚ a company supplying mobile clinics.

The money was paid in 2017 by the department even before the equipment had been inspected by its officials. The department had used a clause in the Public Finance Management Act which allowed it to grant the contract without it going to tender because the Gupta-linked company was already offering a similar service in the Free State.

But Lekalakala landed in hot water last week after it emerged that the North West department made the advance payment just a few months after the Free State issued a contract to the company.

Lekalakala also admitted‚ during a joint sitting of the standing committee on public accounts and the health portfolio committee‚ that he went on a trip to India‚ paid for by Mediosa.

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