New depths

This very brief posting is merely to relay, to anyone who is interested, how appallingly it is possible to behave in pursuit of one’s own financial ends.

The nurses at Mthatha are still out on strike and, as far as I am aware, the same holds at Bizana too.

The ambulance strike is still ongoing.

Clearly the ambulance crews felt that the stoppage was not getting enough notice. Sadly, there is a tradition here of the authorities buckling in response to intense industrial action, rather than doing what would send a very clear message to the strikers (and everyone in a Trades Union here who goes out on unofficial strike) and that is to sack them forthwith.

It is no longer enough to put people’s lives at risk and, let us be clear, people are dying through this irresponsible industrial activity. No indeed, one must make absolutely sure that the action is effective and damn the consequences.

The strikers have now trashed the control centre from where ambulances were coordinated, presumably to prevent anyone else from trying to do their job. No one would because it is clear from other developments that it would put them at risk of their own lives.

An ambulance which was going out to an emergency was shot at.

The last line of help is the helicopter service. These are only called on for extreme cases where specialist advice and care are essential such as saved the life of David our security guard two weeks ago.

The helicopter pilots have now received threats – and these are never to be taken lightly. Understandably they have stopped flying.

Congratulations all round: to the ambulance staff for showing us just how low one can go, to the local administrators for not having the guts to deal with this, and to the government for tolerating, in full knowledge of events, this abject uncivilised obscenity of a situation.

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