Medics down tools over sacking of colleague

DOCTORS at the Voortrekker Hospital in Mokopane yesterday downed tools for the better part of the day and refused to attend to patients.

This after they were reported to have had a dispute with the institution's chief executive, Tiny Kekana.

The doctors accused Kekana of ignoring them when they wanted to voice their concerns about operational matters.

Kekana is alleged, among other things, to have dismissed the hospital's clinical services manager, known only as Dr Ramathuba, without following the proper procedures.

Sowetan learnt that there had been tension between Kekana and Ramathuba for a long time.

The matter came to a head yesterday when about 30 doctors at the hospital staged a sit-in in Kekana's office to demand an explanation for Ramathuba firing.

The police had to be called in to defuse tension as the doctors allegedly threatened to continue with the sit-in until Kekana responded "positively".

One of the doctors, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said yesterday they were 'gatvol' with Kekana's management style and wanted him out "as a matter of urgency".

"We have lost confidence in Kekana because he does not want to listen to us."

Departmental spokesperson Selby Makgotho confirmed that a delegation from the head office was locked in a meeting with Kekana and the doctors in a bid to resolve the matter.

By late yesterday it was not yet clear whether the doctors would resume work after the meeting.