Protesting Sedibeng healthcare workers paid
Contract employees get 3 months wages
About 200 community healthcare workers of the Sedibeng district municipality who had been camping outside the building due to non-payment of salaries were excited as the employer finally deposited their money yesterday.
Alina Modise, 53, one of the 187 ward-based HIV/Aids coordinators contracted by the municipality, was happy she finally got paid as she was facing eviction. Dozens of workers have been protesting outside the municipal building in Vereeniging since Monday. The group has also been sleeping there.
The workers were appointed in July and are on a 12-month contract that runs until June.
Just before 1pm yesterday, the workers jumped in excitement as their outstanding salaries for September, October and November were paid.
Municipal manager Motsumi Mathe confirmed payment.
The workers receive R3,500 a month and are responsible for raising awareness on HIV/Aids through door-todoor campaigns, and carry out tasks at local clinics such as Covid-19 screening at the entrance and assist patients with collecting their medication.
Modise, from Vereeniging, said her rental account was in arrears by almost R3,000. Her rent is R1,500 per month.
“I had to borrow money so that I can pay [some of] my rent for July and August.
“In September, I got a notice from my landlord stating that I should pay my outstanding rental debt before the 7th of December or else I will be kicked out, ’’ said Modise.
Phumzile Vilakazi, 53, of Bophelong said her clothing accounts were in arrears.
“I cannot buy clothes because I have been told by the store to settle my debt first.”
She said she forfeited her R450 monthly contributions to two funeral policies for July and August. “Their incompetence is not helping us. This is heartbreaking.”
Mathe said the delay in July and August was as a result of the Gauteng health department not releasing the grant.
“The department picked up that there were inconsistencies in our reports. We take responsibility for not submitting all documents properly.”
Dimakatso Motaung, 47, of Evaton was glad of the payment but “I have debts I still need to pay off. The best solution would be for the municipality to hire us permanently. They are not alleviating poverty hiring us on a contract.”