The Gauteng Health Department says it will only reopen the Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital after it has dealt with the aftermath of the recent fire, such as ensuring the safety of patients and workers.
Repairs are still under way following last month’s fire which damaged two blocks of the hospital.
Gauteng Head of Communications Thabo Masebe says: “The fire has happened. Now what we are dealing with is the aftermath of the fire. We have to clean the hospital. We have to make sure that when we do open, the hospital it is safe for the patients and those who work there and the public who go to the hospital on a daily basis.”
In the audio below, Masebe gives full details:
More than 800 patients had to be transferred to other health care facilities following the incident, as reported in the video below:
Safety of government buildings
Firefighters, who responded to the blaze at the hospital, say they could have acted more swiftly had the fire hydrant system been fully operational.
The fire has again put the spotlight on poor health and safety controls and non-compliance at state buildings.
In 2018, three firefighters were killed in an inferno at the Bank of Lisbon in Pretoria.
The safety compliance rate stood at a dismal 21%.
In the video below, the safety of government buildings under the spotlight: