Gauteng health department abandons a multimillion-rand hospital

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Gauteng health acting MEC Nomantu Nkomo-Ralehoko revealed this in a written reply to questions tabled by the DA in the provincial legislature on Thursday Photo: GautengeGov / Twitter
Gauteng health acting MEC Nomantu Nkomo-Ralehoko revealed this in a written reply to questions tabled by the DA in the provincial legislature on Thursday Photo: GautengeGov / Twitter

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The Gauteng health department has since terminated its lease at the AngloGold Ashanti Hospital in Carletonville in the West Rand.

Gauteng health acting MEC Nomantu Nkomo-Ralehoko revealed this in a written reply to questions tabled by the DA in the provincial legislature on Thursday.

“The department has since terminated the lease and has no intention of continuing with the project. As a result, the department will remove the last remaining assets and equipment,” she said.

When asked what commissioned work at the hospital was still unfinished, Nkomo-Ralehoko said the building project was completed, but electricity, access control, CCTV and laundry were not yet commissioned.

READ: Gauteng health department urges mothers to breastfeed their babies 

Early this year, Gauteng Health MEC Dr Nomathemba Mokgethi said the provincial government had invested R460 million in the AngloGold Ashanti Hospital after it was identified as a Covid-19 critical-care facility.

It was handed over to the health department on May 14 2021 and Mokgethi said since then, there were only 147 Covid-19 patients who were treated at the hospital.

In March, Mokgethi said the hospital was supposed to have 181 intensive care unit (ICU) beds to treat Covid-19 patients, but only 56 beds could be occupied by patients who did not require ICU management. She added there were also eight wards with 125 beds that had not been completed because contractors had not yet finished their work.

DA’s Gauteng shadow Health MEC Jack Bloom said this was a shattering admission of a massive waste of money that should have been spent on improving existing hospitals that desperately needed more staff and equipment.

READ: Gauteng health department pays R228 million for medical negligence 

Bloom said:

This hospital was donated by the AngloGold Ashanti mining company to assist in treating Covid-19 patients, but R500 million was spent to refurbish it even though the lease was never finalised, nor was the building transferred to the department.

Bloom continued that originally, the department was going to spend R50 million on it for Covid-19 patients, but the Gauteng Provincial Command Council mysteriously decided to upgrade the project to ICU beds.

“This was a stupid decision for a hospital far from major population centres. It’s another big fail that justifies the DA’s motion of no confidence against Premier David Makhura, who is unable to curb corruption and wasteful spending,” he mentioned.

He said the DA would continue to press for full accountability in this matter, including prosecutions of anyone implicated in corrupt contracts.


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