As your trusted publication, we bring you the narrative findings of the forensic report into the drugs and medicine shortage in the country. It's a scary read combing maladministration, corruption, theft, embezzlement and downright incompetence and poor systems and legislation.

The report has been compiled by Funduzi Forensic Services and was looking at the causes of the deadly drugs and medicine shortages in the country that claimed so many lives.

Narrative findings of the report:

● Large quantities of drugs and medicines did not and do not make their way to the public health facilities when they have been paid for. ● Certain Suppliers as indicated in the report have found a way of abusing the system by dumping stock which has not been ordered knowing that certain public officials will facilitate payment thereof.

● Certain Suppliers do not deliver the full stock of drugs despite huge payments being made or expenditure being incurred therefor.

● Certain Public officials caused Government to incur fruitless and wasteful expenditure in that they have allowed and/or facilitated orders that were out of sync with the demand as dictated by disease profiles and consumer patterns leading to over-stocking and drugs expiring.

● The leadership of Central Medical Stores caused Government to incur losses in that there was failure to mitigate theft of drugs and medicines coupled with their failure to follow through on some criminal investigation processes where drugs had been stolen.

● The Officials who are listed in the supplementary reports have a case to answer regarding the allegations of conflict of interests, money laundering, corruption and collusion cited against their names. The conflict of interests relates to moneys received by certain officials from certain Government suppliers as well as gratification received which violates the prescripts of Government.

● The said Officials also have a case to answer regarding improper gratification and non-declaration of work performed outside the Civil Service as well as gifts or gratification obtained from certain Suppliers.

● There were possible duplicate payments made to certain suppliers and in one instance, amounting to E68 Million.

● There were possible fraudulent, fruitless and wasteful expenditure, in one instance, amounting to E7 Million paid towards a service provider in respect of donated trial drugs, which should not have been paid for.

● Certain suppliers were complicit in the facilitation and receipt of undue payments as evidenced in the duplicate payments processed under one batch. ● Certain suppliers were complicit in the creation of a false claim relating to payment for donated trial drugs (Remdesivir).

● A certain supplier failed to honour the Agreement relating to the establishment of a manufacturing facility for drugs as undertaken and contracted in terms of the Memorandum of Agreement entered into with the Kingdom of Eswatini and there were no consequences to this failure.

● There is no credible system in place to manage the ordering, stocking, storage, distribution and supply of drugs and even the current system is by￾passed in favour of the manual system which is susceptible to manipulation.

● The CMS structure is grossly inadequate for the execution of the mandate to manage the ordering, stocking and distribution of drugs and medicines.

● The ordering patterns do not seem to follow best practices regarding the determination of volumes and quantities to order in order to avoid excess stocking of drugs that end up expiring. For example, see table below for comparison of same product ordered in South Africa and Eswatini.