NEHAWU demands dismissal of Limpopo MEC for Health

The union also calls for Director General to be given the boot following Auditor-General finding

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Photo of Stanley Mathabatha
Limpopo Premier Stanley Mathabatha addresses NEHAWU members at a protest in Polokwane on Wednesday. Photo: Bernard Chiguvare

Hundreds of members of the National Education Health and Allied Workers’ Union (NEHAWU) marched to five Limpopo provincial government departments in Polokwane on Wednesday.

They had a string of demands, but the top one was for MEC of Health, Dr Phophi Ramathuba to be dismissed. The union accuses her of failing to address challenges and provide strategic leadership in the health sector.

The protesters marched to the Department of Health, the premier’s office, Treasury, Department of Social Development and the Department of Public Works.

Protesters held placards calling for the removal of the MEC and the head of the health department, as well as saying “Down with austerity measures”, “Insource all outsourced services” and “Pay us danger allowances”.

The march was dubbed a NEHAWU Provincial Day of Action.

Premier Stanley Mathabatha received memorandums addressed to the Treasury and Department of Social Development.

Other demands by the protesters included absorbing health professionals who have completed their community service and strengthening security in all workplaces including clinics, hospitals and administrative offices.

The union also called for the department’s budget to cover 100% of a performance bonus they say is due to workers.

They also said that all clinics that were identified to offer 24/7 services should be made operational with immediate effect.

The protesters called for Nape Nchabeleng, Limpopo’s Director General, to be fired, because the office of the premier was fingered by the Auditor-General for R3.9 million of irregular expenditure for the 2015/16 financial year.

After signing three memorandums, Premier Mathabatha said: “There is no way we will let our workers down. We will attend to all the demands.”

At the Department of Health, MEC Ramathuba signed the memorandum, and was whisked away by officials from her department.

MEC for Health Phophi Ramathuba signs the memorandum. Photo: Bernard Chiguvare

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