Picture Henk Kruger/African News Agency (ANA)
Durban - Forensic pathology services workers on a go-slow in mortuaries across the province are allegedly owed millions of rand in salary increases by the Department of Health.

DA MPL and health spokesperson Dr Imraan Keeka said in one of its health portfolio committee meetings, the department said it owed workers in emergency medical services and pathology about R100million.

Attempts to obtain comment from the department about the allegations were unsuccessful.

Information provided by the DA which allegedly came from the portfolio committee states “there are additional compensation of employees pressures identified in EMS and pathology because of historic rank and grade progression.”

It said: “In 2018/19 early estimates indicate an additional pressure above R100million. No provision could be made for these budget pressures.”

At least one union leader and worker confirmed the workers were owed money but was not certain of the exact figure.

Zimasile Giyama of the National Education, Health and Allied Workers union said some of the money was supposed to have been paid from April.

Dr Keeka said: “They owe the workers in these services more than R100million and they have admitted they do not have the money.”

Keeka said the workers’ concerns were genuine. “I visited a mortuary in Park Rynie and found that pipes in the dissection area were leaking and there was water on the floor.”

At the Fort Napier mortuary in Pietermaritzburg where the go-slow started, bodies brought in for autopsies were piling up as the workers only performed two autopsies a day instead of 10.

Chairperson of the health portfolio committee Yusuf Bhamjee said some of the issues raised fell within the purview of the national department and the two departments should work together to resolve them.

The Mercury