‘No access’: MEC apparently puts a stop to inspection visit to Tembisa hospital

Henry

Three DA members of parliament were denied access to the Tembisa hospital in the East Rand on Wednesday when they arrived there for a surprise inspection visit.

The party wanted to investigate after complaints that patients had to sleep in tents and on the floor of the hospital, among other things.

Solly Msimanga, the DA’s prime minister candidate for Gauteng, says the order to deny the members of parliament access to the hospital was apparently given by Nomanthu Nkomo Ralehoko, MEC for health in this province.

The party believes that this action is not only illegal and a flagrant violation of human rights, but also a clear indication that the department has something to hide.

“The Tembisa hospital has become synonymous with irregularities and has been characterized by fraudulent transactions that have cost the hospital R1 billion,” says Msimanga.

“This includes the acquisition of plastic buckets at an exorbitant amount of R10 000 each. The plague of corruption that paralyzes the hospital is not victimless either: It has a direct effect on patients who have to bear the burden of a defective health system – and they often pay with their lives for this.”

The DA says the seriousness of the corruption is further highlighted by the tragic fate of whistleblowers such as Babita Deokaran, who paid the highest price. Deokaran was shot dead in August 2021 outside her home in Winchester Hills, in the south of Johannesburg.

RNews earlier reported that Deokaran was widely praised for the role she played in exposing corruption. She was one of the more than 320 witnesses in the investigation into fraud with, among other things, personal protective equipment (PPE) in the private and public sector.

Msimanga says Ralehoko must be held accountable for the illegal refusal of the DA’s review visit to take place.

“The blatant disregard for the law by ANC MECs is contributing to the complete decay of the Gauteng healthcare system.

“While companies with ANC ties are allowed to loot, residents must bite the bullet of this crisis.”

The party plans to take action against Ralehoko, although details about this have not yet been made public.