'Petty politicking' DA MP rapped over knuckles for 'field hospital mix-up'

07 August 2020 - 17:30 By Nomahlubi Jordaan
The health department has accused DA shadow minister of health Siviwe Gwarube of lying about the status of a North West field hospital. File picture.
The health department has accused DA shadow minister of health Siviwe Gwarube of lying about the status of a North West field hospital. File picture.
Image: Twitter/Siviwe Gwarube

The national health department has dismissed claims by a DA MP about a field hospital not being operational in the North West and demanded an apology.

“The ministry became aware of a tweet posted by the DA’s Ms Siviwe Gwarube, where she accused the minister of health, Dr Zwelini Mkhize, of lying about the status of Maseve field hospital in the North West and alleged it was still an empty field,” said national health spokesperson Lwazi Manzi.

Despite being corrected by a senior official from the health department, who is an administrator at the North West health department, Gwarube persisted with her allegations and “preposterously” changed her story to suit her narrative and “cheap” political agenda, said the department.

Mkhize had “as a courtesy” called Gwarube to ask why, when a parliamentary reply he had sent to her about the status of Maseve hospital being 90% complete, she visited a completely different site and said it was not the case.

“She apologised and admitted she had made a mistake. She acknowledged that the minister had never said anything about the site she visited and that she could have heard it from a third party. The minister graciously accepted her apology in an effort to engage in a civil and honourable manner with a fellow parliamentary member,” Manzi said.

The department said it was, however, disappointed to learn that Gwarube had then turned to social media and referred to the call by Mkhize as an attempt to explain himself to her.

“It is regrettable that she has decided to continue with her petty politicking, which can only be attributed to immaturity.

“Gwarube is now challenged to publicly produce the parliamentary reply where reference is made to the field she decided to visit,” Manzi said.

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