Jane Sithole MPL
Spokesperson for Department of Health
On Friday the DA reported on the EMS strike that was taking place in Mbombela, calling on the MEC to take immediate action to end the strike and restore valuable emergency services to Mbombela and its surrounding areas.
Although the DA understands that this is an essential service and that the strike is illegal, the actions taking by the MEC for Health, Gillion Mashego, in suspending more than 40 staff members must be questioned. His actions have plundered an already understaffed service in the department into further chaos.
The DA will question the MEC on the reasons why Mpumalanga EMS staff members are the lowest paid in their sector throughout South Africa. It must be questioned whether the low salaries and delays in paying overtime are contributing factors to why the Health Department is struggling to attract and retain qualified personnel.
In the interim, it is vital that the Health Department address the shortage of staff and put measures in place to ensure that the health and safety of the Mpumalanga residents is not at risk.