Minister Motsoaledi must place Free State Health Department under administration

Patricia Kopane, MP

DA Leader in the Free State

The DA in the Free State has repeatedly called on Premier Ace Magashule to fire the MEC for Health, Dr Benny Malakoane, and to implement measures that would see the department’s finances be brought to order. All action must be taken to ensure that the province delivers high quality health care to all of its people.

Our pleas have fallen on deaf ears. As a result we have decided to take drastic action. I will write to the National Minister of Health, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, requesting him to initiate the process of placing the Free State Provincial Department of Health under a Section 100 intervention. National government must come in to clean the mess. The provincial government have shown no will to tackle the problem.

The Free State Provincial Department of Health is near total collapse. Public health facilities across the province are struggling with medicine, medical equipment and professional medical staff shortages. Patients in need of surgery are placed on almost indefinite waiting lists. At some facilities, there is no food to feed patients. Reports have also suggested that the provincial health department is an untenable financial hole.

The situation has become so bad that we have been forced to report the department to the South African Human Rights Commission for Human Rights violations. An investigation is currently ongoing.

We cannot allow the situation to deteriorate further. We are confident Minister Motsoaledi will place the health and welfare of the people of the Free State first and accede to our request.