Medical Aid Scheme ‘a Slush Fund’ for Curator
August 21, 2018
The South African Municipal Workers Union Medical Scheme (Samwumed) has always enjoyed financial health. It has had a solvency ratio 4x the statutory minimum of 25%. Now however, the scheme is facing a host of problems. And labour union conflict is putting the funds of the scheme at risk. There has been bitter infighting. And the Western Cape High Court has ordered the Council for Medical Schemes to place the board of Samwumed under provisional curator.
An anonymous spokesperson said the infighting started in 2016. They decided to “get rid of some people to make way for more agreeable people”. The spokesperson claimed that after these so-called disagreeable people went, the board told the scheme.
Duduza Khosana becomes Provisional Curator
Western Cape High Court then placed the scheme under provisional curator, ordering them to appoint Duduza Khosana as provisional curator. Issues that the court had to determine revolved around whether the board of trustees was properly constitute. They also had to decide whether the council had sufficient cause to warrant the appointment of a curator.
The Council for Medical Schemes said the strife between the bickering parties had resulted in irregularities. These were preventing Samwu’s management from operating effectively. Also their funds were at risk.
This appointment of a provisional curator was to ensure that the scheme could be managed properly. Duduzu was to ‘step into the shoes of the board of trustees. Samwu has always been able to appoint half of Samwumed board’s 18 trustees.
Duduza Khosana, now provisional curator of Samwumed, has claimed that there are uncovered irregularities which she had reported to the Council and also to the Western Cape high court. Meanwhile she is paying herself a cool salary of R240,000 a month and having a whale of time enjoying flights and expensive hotel accommodation every month at the expense of members.
When questioned about this amount, Khosana denied she is earning this amount. In fact, when you try to get hold of Khosana for comment on her extravagant jet-set lifestyle, you can’t get her as she is on one of her shopping sprees.
Sweeping, Unnecessary Expenses
Khosana has suspended some leading Samwumed employees. These trustees whose membership had been terminated have continued to participate in board decisions, and this very act has made the management of the scheme unlawful.
She has also appointed expensive IT forensic experts to check the scheme’s IT system and to investigate information leaks. It seems the curator has also terminated scheme contracts, one of which is with investment consultant, Alexander Forbes, saying that she has ties with another asset manager rather.
Suspect Transactions of Curator Covered Up
Samwumed has collected contributions of more than R1bn a year and also had R1bn in reserves. Now with the appointment of this curator – Khosana – supposedly to sort out the conflict within SAMWU, who knows how long these funds will last with the provisional curator’s slush fund designed to cover up suspect transactions, to avoid internal controls and to enable the curator to continue living an extravagant jet-set lifestyle.
All info was correct at time of publishing