Sizwe goes under provisional curatorship

By Staff Writer

One of South Africa’s largest medical schemes, Sizwe Medical Fund, has been placed under curatorship by the North Gauteng High Court, following the successful application of the Council of Medical Schemes (CMS) to address governance concerns at the scheme.


According to media reports the fund was placed under curatorship this week after it emerged that its principal officer had not finished school and that there were financial irregularities and fraud in the election of its trustees.


The CMS has assured that the fund itself is financially healthy and that the claims-paying abilities of the scheme are not affected by the provisional curatorship. The last financial statements as of 31 December 2011 reflect a solvency ratio of 27%, which is above the prescribed 25% solvency ratio. The Sizwe medical fund was formed in 1978 and to date has 156,000 beneficiaries.


 “The provisional curatorship has nothing to do with the financial soundness of the scheme,” said Dr Monwabisi Gantsho, registrar of Medical Schemes and chief executive of the Council. “There are no concerns whatsoever over the financial position of the scheme.”


However, the CMS warned brokers to act with restraint, adding: “Any advice they give must accord with the principles of best advice, have the best interests of your clients at heart, and be based on a proper assessment of the situation.”


The court has appointed Marshal Gobinca as provisional curator of the Sizwe Medical Fund. The CMS said he will replace the current Board of Trustees and must ensure that a new Board takes over the reins of Sizwe in due course, one that is fit and proper to run the affairs of the scheme.


“In my curatorship capacity, I will be addressing the governance concerns in the management of the scheme affairs. There is a need to implement governance structures and procedures to protect the interests of the beneficiaries of the scheme, and in so doing, also prevent any potential negative impact of the fund,” said Gobinca in a statement.

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