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09 May 2018

Hospersa has welcomed the resignation of North West (NW) Premier, Supra Mahumapelo following violent protests that have brought many essential services in the province to a halt.  The Union has called on the political heads to appoint a credible replacement that will prioritise the resuscitation of the health care service in NW province which has all but collapsed.

The NW Premier has finally resigned following mounting pressure from not just the NW community but from his political party, the African National Congress (ANC).  The writing was on the wall when the ANC reportedly gave the Premier an ultimatum instructing him to resign voluntarily or face being recalled.  His resignation comes at the time when violent protests have been the order of the day in the NW province bringing many essential services to standstill.

“We welcome the NW Premier’s resignation as this will ease tension caused by the violent protests,” said Hospersa Public Relations Officer Kevin Halama.  “It is time that the province focusses on a new era that is corrupt-free and driven by quality service delivery.  The lengthy delay it took the NW Premier to vacate office has had a devasting effects on service delivery in the province whereby many government departments have collapsed, particularly the NW Department of Health (DoH) which continues to be on its knees,” added Halama.

The NW DoH’s woes are exacerbated by the labour unrest which has caused many public health facilities in the province to close its doors.  It is reported that at least six (6) clinics around Mahikeng remain closed, while patients had to be evacuated from the Taung, Lehurutshe and Zeerust hospitals.  This evacuation of patients has led to overcrowding at the Mahikeng Provincial Hospital.  The NW DoH has since been put under administration and the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) has stepped in to stabilise the situation at Mahikeng Provincial Hospital.

“The situation at many of the province’s public health facilities reached crisis level many weeks ago,” said Halama.  “We constantly wrote to the Minister of Health alerting him of the deteriorating state of public health care in the NW province yet his office did not respond to any of our correspondence.  On 14 April 2018, we escalated our calls to President Ramaphosa, asking for his interventions as the situation was becoming even more desperate for patients.  We highlighted the many problems in the NW DoH as result of corruption and maladministration at senior level,” added Halama.

“We have also received reports of intimidation and assault from our members whereby they are threatened from going to work.  These reports have prompted us to write to the Acting Head of Department at the NW DoH asking for protection for our members who are not part of the labour unrest.  It is our view that the employer must provide a safe working condition for its employees as enshrined in the Labour Relations Act (LRA),” said Halama.

“Hospersa encourages its members to report to work if it is safe to do so.  We will continue engaging government within the confines of the law in addressing the pertinent issues that have led to a collapse of health care services in the province,” added Halama.

“We hold strong views about the issues that need urgent attention in order to turn around the ailing NW DoH.  The burning issues that remain a thorn in the flesh are the termination of fraudulent contracts, the filing of vacant funded posts and the need for a forensic investigation into the province’s DoH to root out any other corrupt officials,” argued Halama.

“We hope that the new Premier will be a credible leader and abide by the Batho Pele principles.  The new leader must also be unafraid to act against other cadre deployees found to be violating their oath of office at the expense of quality service delivery,” concluded Halama.





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For interviews please contact Hospersa Public Relations Officer Kevin Halama – 060-546-8166.

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