Heal our sick Bara

Chris Hani-Baragwanath Hospital is sick and our bumbling bureaucrats don't seem to know what to do.

Chris Hani-Baragwanath Hospital is sick and our bumbling bureaucrats don't seem to know what to do.

Two ministers of health have come and gone, but little has changed in Sowetan's horrifying reports from Africa's largest hospital over the past 14 years.

Now a foreign TV channel has picked up the tale with a series that lays bare the sordid conditions patients and staff must endure.

Authorities constantly plead poverty and complain of a lack of resources. But last year the chief executive spent R7million on swanky furniture while down the corridor newborn babies were kept in cardboard boxes.

True to form, his bosses responded to the maelstrom of criticism it generated by shunting him to a new job - and then sending him to management classes.

That's right: the head of one of the busiest hospitals in the world got management training after he was canned.

Maybe we are grasping at straws, but we hope that the new health minister, Barbara Hogan, will urgently take the matter in hand. She has proved she has the mettle to step in efficiently where others have feared to tread.

However it comes about, 15 years into democracy the people of Soweto have the right to expect their government to provide them competent healthcare on their doorstep

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