The country’s biggest nurses’ union has called on President Cyril Ramaphosa not to retain Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi in his Cabinet after the May polls.
On Wednesday, Denosa president Simon Hlungwani said the health system had collapsed under Motsoaledi’s watch and the minister had failed to prepare the country for the implementation of the National Health Insurance (NHI).
Speaking at Denosa’s national conference in Durban, Hlungwani said the health system was in a crisis.
“We want people who are proactive and who plan beforehand,” he said.
On failing to prepare the country for the implementation of the NHI, Hlungwani said: “The current minister has reached the pinnacle of his career, and there is nothing more he can offer the department of health.”
However, he said, Cosatu still sees Motsoaledi as a good and capable comrade, “but (one) who should be deployed elsewhere”.
“After the elections, we want a different minister, and that is what this conference is going to deliberate.
“We have not invited the minister as we just don’t want him any more, and I can confirm that even with the MEC in KZN, a similar stance had been taken by the province, as they have had enough of him,” he said.
Hlungwani accused KZN health MEC Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo of not sharing information with health employees and the public about the extent of oncology problems in the province.
“We are calling for an investigation on how many people died during that saga of not having cancer treatment, because some doctors are saying there were 460 (deaths).
“Now tell me, who in his conscious mind can bring such a person back when something like that could happen under his leadership?” he said.
Motsoaledi’s spokesperson, Popo Maja, said allegations that the minister had collapsed the health system were “outrageous”.
“In as far as we are aware, there is nothing supporting that. The minister has been the champion of the NHI,” said Maja.
ANC KZN spokesperson Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu said the relevant authorities would assess Dhlomo’s performance.
Simelane-Zulu said before deploying its leaders, the deployment committee and party’s provincial leaders would first assess them.
When asked if the ANC was happy with Dhlomo’s performance, she said: “Once the assessment is done, the ANC will take a decision.”