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Probe into hospital store room findings

Bloemfontein - An investigation is to be launched at the Pelonomi Hospital after much needed medical equipment and consumables were founded locked away in store rooms, the Free State health department said on Tuesday.

“An independent investigation team... will be set up to speedily assist in investigating what exactly happened,” provincial health spokesman Tebogo Oepeng said.

Free State Premier Ace Magashule File picture: Bongiwe Mchunu. Credit: Independent Newspapers

The medical equipment and consumables were found at a transit site during a clean-up campaign on Mandela Day on Friday by Free State premier Ace Magashule.

It was reported Magashule discovered new heart monitors, uniforms, syringes, and consumables, such as washing powder and toilet paper, in store rooms at the back of the hospital.

Mandela Day on July 18 has become an annual day of volunteering to do community service such as cleaning up public places in honour of former president Nelson Mandela, who died in December.

Pelonomi Hospital, the biggest health care facility in the Free State, has been battling due to medicine and equipment shortages because of a lack of funds.

Oepeng said health MEC Benny Malakoane and public works MEC Sam Mashinini met with hospital management and organised labour at the hospital on Monday.

“The purpose of the meeting was to decide on the investigation that was to unfold,” he said.

Everyone at the meeting was in agreement that those responsible for dumping the equipment and consumables should take responsibility and face the consequences.

“This cannot be tolerated, particularly when there has been reported shortages of these items,” he said. - Sapa

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