BUDGET VOTESVote 18:Health

Hon. MD Hlengwa, MP
23 July 2020

Dear Honourable Members, as we are heading into the storm of the Covid-19 pandemic, now more than ever we need to ensure our hospitals have detailed and transparent prevention strategies, and are enforcing these accordingly.

Before turning to the Supplementary Budget of the Department of Health, the IFP wishes to stress its concern on reports of the high number of infection of healthcare workers in the province of KwaZulu-Natal – especially at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli Hospital in Durban. We understand that the KwaZulu-Natal MEC for Health has recently established a personal health and safety committee at the Hospital. The committee will apparently address this rise in infections and look into challenges surrounding Personal Protective Equipment protocols.

The IFP will carefully monitor this situation to ensure transparency and accountability is upheld. We cannot risk the lives of our frontline healthcare workers, who have been tirelessly fighting this pandemic.

Honourable Members, on consideration of the Supplementary Budget of the Department of Health, the IFP in general supports the budgetary adjustments.

We understand that the need for funds was much higher than the allocated R21.5 billion to healthcare and this place an immense pressure on provincial health departments to further reprioritise their needs.

The IFP, however, remains concerned about the provincial health departments’ ability to manage the impact of this pandemic. Our country can simply not afford any mismanagement and poor planning in the prevention and treatment of this pandemic.

It is critical that the provincial health departments provide detailed plans on how they will use the allocated funds. These plans should be detailed and transparent. The IFP also urges the National Department of Health to ensure the provinces’ business plans in this regard are made available for consideration. We cannot allow waste of resources in managing and preventing the further spread of this virus.

In conclusion, Honourable Members, the IFP remains committed to monitoring expenditure carefully, and will not be a passive bystander in the fight against Covid-19.

Hon. MD Hlengwa, MP
073 999 0741