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30 EMS staff suspended

By Alex Matlala - matlalaa@sowetan.co.za | 2011-06-22 06:16:14.0

THE Limpopo department of health and social development has suspended more than 30 employees in its emergency medical services (EMS).

The suspensions come after the officials were found to have allegedly produced bogus certificates in Basic Ambulance and Control Centre courses. They were suspended with pay last week pending further investigation.

Department spokesperson Joe Maila confirmed the suspensions yesterday. He said those affected were from EMS stations in the province's five districts.

Maila said the department was further investigating the college or people involved in issuing the certificates with a view to taking legal action against them.

He said they had also discovered that the officials in question were not registered with the Health Professions Council of South Africa, a departmental requirement.

He said the institution or individuals who issued the fraudulent certificates had charged unsuspecting clients R6000 or more. The bogus certificates were issued by the Limpopo Ambulance Training Academy (Lata).

Contacted for comment, Lata manager Rufus Matsena said the college was aware that there were people using its name for personal gain. Matsena said they had since opened cases with the police who were busy with investigations.

Lieutenant Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe confirmed that they were investigating cases of fraud.

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