'Gun-toting robbers steal patient’s car at KwaZakhele Clinic' - DA concerned

OCTOBER 13, 2016

Inadequate security at clinics in the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro was once again highlighted on Monday when the waiting room of the Lunga Kobese Clinic in KwaZakhele became a life-threatening danger zone.

This according to the Democratic Alliance (DA) in the Eastern Cape, which said that in a well-run province, quality health care would go hand in hand with ensuring the safety of staff and patients.

"In the latest incident, two gun-toting men allegedly entered the waiting room at the clinic in Kwazakhele at 13:10 and held a male patient at gunpoint. They stole the patient's car keys, helped themselves to his vehicle and drove off with his phone, his wallet and the contents of his car," described Celeste Barker (MPL), the DA's Eastern Cape Shadow MEC for Health.

"Continuous break-ins, robberies and theft at clinics in NMBM must end."

Barker said that other incidents include:

• Four robberies at the New Brighton Clinic in September;
• A stabbing inside the Veeplaas Clinic in August;
• Robbery and alleged assault at the Zwide Clinic in July;

"Such behaviour is completely unacceptable! It is cruel, life-threatening, out of place in a building devoted to healthcare and a major fear factor for staff and fragile patients, weakened by disease and pain," she described.

"The DA condemns all destructive thugs and thieves who violate our health facilities. Such crimes delay and compromise the delivery of healthcare and create a hostile, suspicious culture of aggression and fear.

"The DA appreciates the efforts by the Department of Health to improve security at the New Brighton Clinic, but Health MEC Phumza Dyantyi must ensure that all clinics are no-go places for criminals."

Barker said in a DA-run province will make sure that there are funds dedicated to sufficient 24-hour security at these facilities.