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EFF, DA urge Limpopo MEC's ouster for hospital rant at Zimbabwean patient

by Staff reporter
24 Aug 2022 at 21:21hrs | Views
South Africa's opposition parties, Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) and the Democratic Alliance (DA) have called for the sacking of Limpopo provincial executive and medical doctor Phophi Ramathuba who was recently filmed confronting a Zimbabwean hospital patient for seeking medical attention in SA.

In the image that has gone viral on social media, an excitable Ramathuba launches a brazen rant against the Zimbabwean, saying Zimbabwe President Emmerson Mnangagwa does not contribute to Limpopo's health budget.

Ramathuba harped on about how it was appalling for South Africa's health services to be burdened by foreigners at the expense of locals.

Her comments elicited wide outrage both in South Africa and Zimbabwe.

In a candid condemnation of the embarrassing conduct by the public official, Julius Malema's party said the comments were "cynical, arrogant and morally bankrupt".

"The EFF calls for the immediate removal of the cynical, arrogant and morally bankrupt MEC of health in Limpopo, Phophi Ramathuba, for her inhumane comments towards a sickly patient in a hospital in Bela Bela," spokesperson Sinawo Tambo said in a statement Wednesday.

"The hateful comments, which were in full view of individuals who laughed at the merciless shaming of a patient, reveal a shocking hatred for a fellow human being by someone tasked with protecting and saving human life.

"It is a slippery slope, because health rights are human rights and to attempt to rationalise the denial of the provision of healthcare on the basis of someone's nationality will lead to gross human [rights] violations whose logic is pure hatred."

The EFF accused Ramathuba of being a populist who is joining the "pretentious and opportunistic campaign by the ANC to shift the responsibility of SA on so-called foreign nationals".

The DA in Limpopo has also written to the SA Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) expressing its outrage over Ramathuba's conduct.

"There are legislative channels the MEC can explore to deal with the challenges of resources that do not include embarrassing a patient seeking medical assistance," said Risham Maharaj, MPL and DA Limpopo spokesperson for health.

"As an MEC, she should have treated the situation with the necessary sensitivity despite her frustrations and ensured the foreign national is afforded the same level of respect and treatment as any other patient."

The DA accused Ramathuba of being an underachiever in her role as MEC and not adequately overseeing "the lacklustre performance of the province's health department".

"She cannot place the difficulty of running the province's health department on foreign nationals alone and sidestep years of her department's failures, corruption, mismanagement and incompetence.

"This incident is just another reason she must be fired to save the province's health system."

The DA said it was also going to file a complaint with the Limpopo legislature ethics committee and the Health Professions Council of SA.

Source - zimlive