NMB ambulance crew strike


Ambulance crews, unhappy over the non-payment of overtime have closed the gates to the Lindsay Street headquarters of EMS in Port Elizabeth.
This follows a sit-in on Friday and a weekend where crews were on a go-slow strike.
By law ambulance crews are not allowed to strike. A spokesman for the group said they used hospital beds to block the entrances.
On Friday health spokesman Lwandile Sicwetsha said they were in process of paying overtime claims as far back as 2014.
He said the group also demands overtime to be paid on claims as old as 2003 but these will take time as they must be verified first.
The deputy chairperson of the Treatment Action Campaign, Thembisile Nogampule, said there were already a crisis at Laetitia Bam Clinic on Monday morning.
"We phoned Brenhan Metune, the head of EMS in the metro, and he sent an private ambulance to help," he said.
He said the first crisis case of the day was a woman who needed urgent care when she went into labour. “They are really struggling on the trauma side too,” he said.
Sicwetsha said the strike was illegal.
“The department will undertake internal processes to deal with the workers (on duty) involved in this illegality.”
He said the Department will release contingency plans during the strike later today.

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