By John Moodey MPL, DA Gauteng Provincial Leader:
The ANC in the Gauteng Legislature has tried to block the DA’s constitutional mandate of conducting oversight visits to public institutions by presenting a doctored and contradictory Privileges and Ethics Committee report.
In July 2014, DA Shadow MEC of Health, Jack Bloom was escorted off the premises of the Helen Joseph Hospital when he attempted to carry out an unannounced oversight visit to inspect sanitation and allegations of broken lifts.
According to hospital staff, this was done by order of the MEC for Health, Qendai Mahlangu.
The DA summarily requested that the Ethics and Privileges Committee investigate this matter as in 2008, the Gauteng Legislature adopted a house resolution giving “unrestricted access to health institutions except sensitive areas of a hospital”.
The report, which does not accurately reflect the true sequence of events, absolves the MEC from any wrongdoing.
It in fact indicates that MEC Mahlangu would like to restructure the House Resolution of 2008, granting her powers beyond her position, due to the fact that “unannounced oversight visits draw negative media coverage.”
The DA will not be intimidated by the ANC, the MEC, or any other member of the executive from carrying out our oversight duties – granted by the Powers, Privileges and Immunities of Parliaments and Provincial Legislatures Act of 2004.
Voters of Gauteng have given us a mandate to scrutinise and hold Premier David Makhura’s executive to account, and we will continue to do so with the utmost rigor.