Friday, 19 April, 2024
HomeMedico-LegalCouple accuses Ramaphosa of links to medical aid fraud

Couple accuses Ramaphosa of links to medical aid fraud

A couple with a history of litigation now claims that President Cyril Ramaphosa benefitted from fraud and corruption, linked to various medical schemes, while he was chairperson of the Bidvest Group.

Yusuf Cassiem and his wife Charlnita, a former Netcare nurse (who is currently facing proceedings before the Nursing Council of South Africa for over-billing) detailed the allegations in their affidavits submitted to the Constitutional Court, reports The Sunday Tribune.

Previously, they said they found out about the alleged links after Charlnita had opened their private care centre, according to documents submitted to the Western Cape Equality Court, in which they also said National Renal Care (NRC) – a wholly South African company jointly owned by Netcare and Adcock Ingram – was practising under a false number that belonged to a clinical technologist registered under the Health Professions Act and regulated by the Health Professions Council of SA.

The clinical technologist, according to the couple, was not a doctor but provided an auxiliary service to medical practitioners.

The pair said Ramaphosa allegedly benefited through laundering the capital market company BB Investment’s shareholding in Adcock Ingram, which owns 50% indirect shares in the NRC via Dilwed Investment.

BB Investment is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Bidvest Group, which acquired beneficial interests in Adcock in 2013.

Ramaphosa, who has shares in Bidvest, was appointed chairperson of the group in 2004 and resigned in 2013 after being elected deputy president of the ANC in December 2012.

The couple said Ramaphosa received BEE shares from Bidvest as the middleman who assisted the company to have full control over Adcock – while their business was unfairly closed.

Asked to comment, neither Ramaphosa’s spokesperson Vincent Magwenya nor BB Investment responded.

Adcock’s secretary and head of legal Lucy Phalafala said the company endorsed NRC’s response that it would not entertain the “spurious and unfounded” allegations.

“Neither NRC nor Adcock Ingram has ever been involved in any form of money laundering. Nor has either been mentioned in any report by the State Capture Commission or been asked to make submissions or respond to the commission in any way.

“…The damaging and defamatory allegations are false and without merit. We support NRC in rejecting them with contempt and (with NRC) will pursue … action to ensure those behind these claims are held fully accountable.”

The Bidvest Group said its answer was contained in Adcock’s response as a subsidiary of the group.

NRC chief executive officer Dr Chevon Clark said NRC had never engaged in any form of money laundering nor entertained any association with illicit activities, including state capture.

“We view these allegations in the most serious light,” she said.

In the affidavit, Charlnita also said directors of Dilwed and NRC had no health qualifications, which was a violation of Section 22 of the Constitution.

She accused Ramaphosa and the former CEO of allegedly signing off on the financials of Bidvest knowing they were receiving income from Adcock, which was generating income through alleged money laundering from NRC.

This resulted in Discovery and Bonitas denying her the right to treat members – while they earned income from NRC’s money laundering, she contended.

Discovery Health chief executive Dr Ron Whelan said they were unaware of the application, which appeared to have the same concerns as the Cassiems’ previous application brought before the Constitutional Court in 2021.

“That one was dismissed on the grounds that it constituted an inappropriate direct approach to the Constitutional Court and did not raise a constitutional issue or an arguable point of law.

“We will consider the matter further once we have received notice of the new application,” he said

Bonitas’ principal officer, Lee Callakoppen, said they were aware of similar allegations that had been made by the Cassiems since at least 2017, primarily against the Government Employment Medical Scheme (GEMS).

The allegations, he added, had been ventilated numerous times before various courts, including High Courts, the Supreme Court of Appeal, the Constitutional Court, the Competition Tribunal and the Equality Court.

“We are further aware that Mrs Cassiem (Charlnita), is still facing proceedings – for over-billing – before the Nursing Council. The matter is still under consideration.

“Bonitas rejects with utter contempt the allegations made by the Cassiems… these are completely without basis and devoid of truth.

“Bonitas reserves its rights to take the appropriate legal action should it become necessary, and to hold the Cassiems responsible for any damage caused … as a result of their unsubstantiated and unwarranted statements.”

 

Sunday Tribune PressReader article – Couple accuses Ramaphosa of having benefited from fraud (Open access)

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