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Health Dept employees work 3-hour days because HQ is a health hazard

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South Africa’s national Health Department has told employees to only work three hours a day because, ironically, its headquarters are still a health hazard. According to a report on the HR Pulse site, the Civitas Building in Pretoria, which also houses the health minister, seems to be in an ever-deteriorating state, with parts of the ceiling collapsing and sections of the building cordoned off.

A building inspection conducted last year identified various problem such as leaking ceilings and exposed electrical cables, while black dust was detected in the high-tech building which has no windows. Ventilation was found to be poor.

The report says a task team was established to find alternative buildings, but since then not much has changed, except the working hours of health staff. A notice was issued in October for staff to report for duty from 8am to 11am to allow the department to upgrade the dilapidated building. And, the report says, some staff members have opted to work from the parking lot or the building’s foyer for fear of being harmed or falling ill due to the hazardous building.

Health department spokesperson Popo Maja could not confirm how the department’s work has been impacted by the shorter working hours. He also couldn’t say when staff would be relocated to an alternative building, the report says.

Full report on the HR Pulse site

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