Government Must Address Poor State Of Public Buildings

James Masango MPL

Provincial Chief Whip of the Official Opposition.

The following member’s statement was delivered by James Masango to the Mpumalanga Provincial Legislature during its sitting in Bushbuckridge.

Across Mpumalanga, the general state of government buildings leave much to be desired, with almost every piece of government property is some state of decay, or even collapse – and Bushbuckridge is no exception.

The question that arises is why did government allow these buildings to decay to such an extent, and why did it not maintain these properties?

Earlier in February this year I visited a number of schools in the Bushbuckridge area. Walls were cracked, floors were virtually non-existent due to “potholes”, and roofs blown away by storm winds in 2009 and never repaired.

As we speak, conditions in those schools have not improved. The Tintswalo Hospital is in such a shocking state that when seen from the outside, it does not even look like a hospital. If government cannot even repair a simple toilet door lock, how is it possible to take care of an entire hospital?

No matter how good a government’s retention policy is, one will not be able to attract and retain doctors, nurses, specialists and teachers when they have to work in such terrible conditions. No matter how good teachers are at their trade, learners will not perform to the best of their abilities if they have to learn in such poor conditions.

The workplace environment must be conducive for doctors, nurses and teachers to work and for learners to learn – it is only then that we can expect good results. Government must therefore seriously consider the prioritisation of maintenance of government buildings.

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