ANC doesn’t take issues at Winburg Hospital seriously, says DA

Mariette Pittaway

It’s all fun and games for members of the ANC holding seats at the Free State Legislature. That is according to the Democratic Alliance’s Member of the Provincial Legislature, Mariette Pittaway.

Pittaway alleges that members of the ruling party laughed at her when she presented her statement on service delivery issues at the Winburg Regional Hospital, situated along the N1 and N5 roads.

In a media statement released by the DA, Pittaway alleges that the hospital, which is situated at a strategic point, cannot provide members of the surrounding communities with emergency services and is at the moment only providing medical services.

“It is a pity because that hospital is in such a strategic place. The two nearest hospitals are Boitumelo Hospital in Kroonstad and Pelonomi in Bloemfontein, which could mean the difference between life and death for some residents,” she says.

Pittaway also alleges that staff shortages are a big part of the problem as there are only 8 nurses on a 24 hour shift and there are also no porters, forcing the clerical staff to act as porters. Pittaway also says the nurse’s home on the hospital premises is in shambles.

“There is absolutely no maintenance being done at the hospital, while it is almost 5 years since the medical equipment have last been serviced. The operating theatre has been shut down and all staff vacancies have been frozen. Even basic procedures like circumcisions cannot be done. There is also no primary healthcare doctor,” she says in the statement.

She questions the provincial health department, and asks how nurses are expected to live and work in those conditions. Provincial health spokesperson, Mondli Mvambi, says he believes that the DA is politicising service delivery issues. Speaking to Bloemfontein Courant, Mvambi said he wants to know what the opposition party’s intentions are with a statement like that. While he was unable to provide further comment as he was in the middle of a meeting, Mvambi said: “I have a problem when they politicise these issues by looking at only one angle.”

Mvambi promised to expand on the matter at a later stage.

– Pulane Choanne