by Andrew Louw – DA Northern Cape Premier Candidate
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Date: 20 March 2019
Note to Editors: Find attached soundclips in English and Afrikaans from DA Northern Cape Premier Candidate, Andrew Louw
The Democratic Alliance (DA) in the Northern Cape has reported the provincial Health Department to the South African Human Rights Commission for its failure to provide adequate health services to the De Aar community due to its own failure to address water infrastructure problems at the facility.
The hospital has been struggling with an interrupted flow of water in various parts of the hospital for well over a month already, due to the water pumps having burnt out.
The army vehicle and municipal vehicle that were used to transport water to the hospital, have both also broken down. While there is currently a mobilized reservoir parked not too far from the hospital, this nonetheless provides a massive challenge to health care providers.
Just this past weekend, patients were sent home because of water shortages, coupled with unavailability of food.
It was further reported yesterday that a patient with a serious lung infection could not be admitted due to the water crisis and that there were only three patients booked into the women’s ward.
In the meantime, a private doctor, who performs general operations and caesareans at this hospital, has been seen transporting between 20 to 40 liters of water to the facility every time he has to perform a scheduled operation.
Aside from the lack of water, the facility has also been without hot water since the opening of this supposed state of the art hospital facility, less than a year ago.
The once neat hospital grounds have also turned to ruin.
It is unacceptable and disgraceful that sick and vulnerable people are being denied health care because of dire mismanagement of the Health Department.
The De Aar case is not an isolated incident.
There are also reports that the Warrenton Hospital has been without water for two weeks, also due to a broken pump. Clearly, just like with the current Eskom crisis, the chronic lack of maintenance is bringing services to their knees.
While tomorrow is Human Rights Day, there will be little to celebrate. The failing ANC has clearly forgotten about the people of this province, and its government is violating people’s rights left, right and centre.
This is epitomized by Premier Sylvia Lucas’s recent nonchalant remarks to a DA question regarding the lack of hot water at the hospital.
“Do patients want to be clean or do patients want to be healthy?” she asked.
Surely, our people do not want such an uncaring government? If we do not commit ourselves to make the right choice come election day, we will be transported into further doom by the same broken bus with the same crooked ANC drivers.
Only change under a DA-led government will ensure that health facilities are at all times up and running through regular maintenance and infrastructure upgrades, that will ensure uninterrupted health care for all.
DA Northern Cape Premier Candidate
082 383 6914