02 February 2017
The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (Denosa) in Gauteng welcomes the release of the report into the death of the 94 psychiatric patients. We have been following this matter closely and have long awaited for the release of this report. We fully agree with the recommendations of the report. As we welcome the resignation of MEC Mahlangu, however, we call for her to be further held accountable for the decisions taken in this regard.
The tradition of people resigning after creating blunders to run away from responsibility should not be encouraged. All public servants, including politicians, must always be held accountable and not be allowed to run away by resigning. This report exposes our long held view that the Gauteng Department of Health doesn’t take serious all stakeholders and unions through their conduct of always engaging in bad faith and taking decisions unilaterally without considering other views. This is also evident in the looming corruption into the changing of the student funding model from a PERSAL system to a bursary system to create an environment for looting while claiming to be cutting costs at the expense of quality of health care.
The main reason that was used for the relocation of these patients as a ‘cost-cutting measure’ is a tired excuse that is used all the time to create favourable conditions for looting.
While we acknowledge the action taken by the Premier, we are still studying this report further and will engage our counterparts Nehawu and Cosatu to pronounce on a way forward on our part. We welcome the swift appointment of Dr Gwen Ramakgopa, as such a crucial department cannot remain leaderless for long. We hope that as she begins, she will be able to reverse all the awful decisions taken before this one, such as the introduction of the bursary system in nursing education so that we can be able to curb corruption and commercialisation of nursing in the province. We place most of our trust in the fact that she is also a healthcare practitioner, and that she will be easy to engage just as it was easy when she was the MEC and then the Deputy Minister.
We will also be calling for an urgent bilateral meeting with her so that we can be able to take forward the department and serve the citizens of Gauteng.
We will be commenting further on this matter together with Nehawu and Cosatu on Friday after completing reading and discussing the report.
Issued by the Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa in Gauteng
For more information contact:
Simphiwe Gada, DENOSA Gauteng Provincial Chairperson
Mobile: 079 501 4869