The Eastern Cape National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) supports the decision by the medical Doctors to go to a rolling mass picket action in demand of their unpaid wages from the Eastern Cape Provincial Department of Health.
This rolling mass picket action taking place today, Tuesday May 29, 2012, at Nelson Mandela Academic Hospital, led by South African Medical Association (SAMA) should be located and understood within the broader class struggles waged by workers and poor for equal redistribution of income at the point of production.
As NUMSA we call on our revolutionary and people’s government as led by the ANC to resolve this wage impasse in line with the key electoral priorities of providing quality health-care for the poor.
The inability by the ANC-led provincial government to resolve this impasse might undermine the National Health Insurance (NHI) pilot projects as announced by the hardworking and energetic Minister of Health Dr Aaron Motsoaledi.
We are extremely worried that Doctors in the Eastern Cape have not been paid for over six (6) months, whilst the very same Doctors are expected to provide quality service in public hospitals in the interest of our poor communities.
We firmly believe that this impasse could have long been resolved, and that in as much as Doctors should provide service to poor patients and the elderly, it would be unfair to expect them to execute their duties with perfection without being paid for almost six months.
We demand that our people’s government consider the implications for poor patients and the elderly and ensure that they continue to access quality service in public hospitals.
The failure by the ANC-led provincial government to avert this impasse might led to a wide scale shut-down of hospitals and this will be a betrayal to the patients and the elderly.
As NUMSA we call on SAMA to intensify their picket action by embarking on indefinite strike action until their demands are met by the incompetent Provincial Department of Health.
Contact: Phumzile Nodongwe, Regional Secretary – 0788023140
Numsa Press Release