DA questions why Health Department is hoarding food parcels
by Andrew Louw – DA Northern Cape Premier Candidate
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Date: 04 December 2018
The Democratic Alliance (DA) in the Northern Cape has requested that Health MEC, Fufe Makatong, provide reasons why the provincial Health Department is in the business of hoarding food parcels.
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It has recently come to light that the department is sitting with a boardroom full of food parcels at its head office in Kimberley.
The only conclusion that the DA can draw from the department’s suspicious behavior is that they are busy stockpiling food parcels to be used to win votes ahead of next year’s seven by-elections, to be held in Sol Plaatje municipality. The failing ANC currently risks losing a number of its former stronghold wards, following the expulsion of the ANC 11, who voted with the DA to oust former Mayor, Mangaliso Matika.
This is not the first time that the Health Department has come under the spotlight for its questionable practices relating to the storage of food parcels.
In 2016, shortly before the local government elections, the health department was also caught red handed with thousands of food parcels that had been rotting away in a Kimberley warehouse. Much of the perishable foodstuff had already deteriorated to such an extent that it was no longer fit for human consumption. At the time, the department indicated that the food parcels had been intended for HIV/Aids patients.
The DA demands a clear answer from MEC Makatong.
Neither she, nor the failing ANC, have any right to abuse state funds for party political purposes. If these food parcels are indeed intended to buy votes next year, then the ANC should be ashamed of itself. They are stealing food out of the mouths of poor, sick patients, who cannot take their Anti-retroviral Medication on an empty stomach. This is inhumane to say the least.
The DA will closely monitor the distribution of the food parcels in question. Should the ANC been found to be handing out these parcels to garner support, we will lay a charge of theft against them for stealing food parcels from the Health Department. We will also ensure that the government officials who enabled this looting of health resources for political purposes, are held accountable.
Only change under a DA-led government will ensure that not even the crumbs of state resources are wasted or misused, in the fight for better healthcare for all.