By Confidence Mkhabele
Limpopo Department of Health rejected groundsman volunteers at the Loloka Community Clinic in Loloka village, Ka- Dzumeri on the outskirts of Giyani.
The clinic was officially opened four years ago. According to our source, community members volunteered to clean the clinic yard after the contractor had completed their work.
Giyani View understands that five of the volunteers continued to work without getting a pay.
In 2018 the department of health granted a circular No. 31 with groundsman posts to local clinics around Malamulele, Giyani and Hlanganani, Loloka was also allocated a post.
The Steering Committee discussed the post with Giyani district to recommend the volunteered to be given an opportunity to be appointed to the post.
The department requested the steering committee to write recommendations letters about the volunteers. The committee complied with this directive and followed due procedure. Four volunteers duly applied for the post and signed the applications register book.
In a suprising turn of events and to their dismay, three unknown people reported for duty as groundsmen on the 2nd of December 2019. The wrath of steering committee and the community was stirred upon realizing that none of the recommended community members and volunteers were considered for appointment. The angry steering committee and the community refused to let the strangers to commence with their duties by preventing them from entering the premises.
The steering committee together with the community told Giyani View that they want the MEC of Health to consider their complaint, and vowed that until such time that the MEC respond to their grievance, they would not allow the three new appointed workers to resume work.
They demand investigations against the shortlisting panel, and called for all rejected applications recorded in the register book to be retrieved and checked. The aggrieved community are unwavering in their call for the MEC to respond swiftly and decisively to this matter.
The chairperson of steering committee, Soyaphi Shivambu told Giyani View that it hurts the community that the volunteers were overlooked in the appointment processes, moreso after their hardwork and dedication resulted in the clinic receiving an award for being clean and well ventilated.
During his on air radio interview at Munghana Lonene FM, Tiko axietleli on Monday evening, Shivambu explained the crux of their dispute. Spokesperson for the Limpopo Department of Health, Neil Shikwambani retorted by stating that being a volunteer doesn’t entitle a person to any job.
“A volunteer is a person who committed himself to work for free. He further said that there prescribed procedures that are followed when fill vacancies. He said the department could deviate from the set out processes and criteria used to select and shortlist the best candidates required for the job.
He went on to state that the department has power to transfer the new employees to other clinics in need or those who were not included in the previous circular. He said this may result in the posts being allocated to other clinics, and for Loloka Community Clinic having to wait to be accomodated in another job circular in the future.