WATCH: Soshanguve children's centre not Covid-19 compliant
Pretoria - The management of the Father Smangaliso Mkhatshwa Centre of Excellence and Department of Social Development’s regional officials have one week to ensure the centre is compliant with directives for Covid-19 and safe for children entrusted in the centre's care.
Deputy Minister for Social Development, Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu expressed anger and frustration earlier today as she visited the centre to assess its compliance with prevention and control measures for Covid-19.
Bogopane-Zulu, speaking to the officials present and management of the centre, said she was upset and irritated that despite having visited the centre previously, a number of the issues they dealt with still remained a problem.
She said she was not happy with the lack of compliance by the centre to the department's own directives on resuming operations during the lockdown.
“From where I am sitting this thing must be closed and not open.
"How can you have 172 employees who serve only 27 children and it's okay?
"Does that make sense to anyone?”
“Non-profit organisations are being operated better than this government facility so maybe we should take the money we pump into these facilities and rather give it to them to run.”
Bogopane-Zulu took to task departmental officials on the lack of oversight of facilities and more especially why the staff at the centre was not tested daily as per the department's instructions.
“Children are referred to these centre’s by the courts and if the chief justice takes a detour here he will start with Lindiwe Zulu, followed by me, the MEC, head of department and march us all to jail because we have failed these children.”
“Children’s rights in this country are absolute and not within available resources.
"Human settlements can say they don’t have money to give someone a house and the courts can’t do anything, but that's not the same with children.”