The Gauteng Health Department has denied allegations that senior officials had not taken steps to deal with complaints regarding safety issues at the Bank of Lisbon building. Spokesperson Lesemang Matuka is quoted in The Star as saying that head of department Mkhululi Lukhele appointed a senior manager to be responsible for occupational health and safety matters at the head office, and that he had approved the establishment of an Occupational Health and Safety Committee.
Gauteng government spokesperson Thabo Masebe said the department was currently renting office space: “It means an inconvenience not only to the staff, but to the public. Heads of departments were instructed to ensure that there was minimal disruption to service and that everything should be done to ensure staff were able to continue working.”
“We see this as a case of complete negligence and disregard for people’s lives. Our members cautioned about the unsafe building but were dismissed but after we appealed, they were reinstated. Even after they returned to work, they would raise issues about the unsafe working conditions,” said National Education Health and Allied Workers Union (Nehawu) Gauteng deputy secretary Gracia Rikhotso.The Star report