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Dept to meet with staff over Covid complaints

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Staff are unhappy after two traffic officers tested positive.

Picture: Willem Law/African News Agency (ANA)

THE NORTHERN Cape Department of Transport, Safety and Liaison will meet with staff members on Friday following complaints that Covid-19 regulations were not followed after two officials were confirmed to have tested positive. 

Staff are aggrieved that the traffic officers who tested positive for the coronavirus, who are based at the regional office at the Department of Transport, Safety and Liaison, had also visited the provincial offices at the Ocean Echo Building in Kimberley last week. 

Staff members stated that they have refused to report for work since Tuesday as they have not been tested or told to self-isolate. 

“The regional and provincial offices were never closed or disinfected but the rest of the staff are expected to continue working and the infected officials were seen at work,” said the staff members yesterday.

The spokesperson for the Northern Cape Department of Transport, Safety and Liaison, Rennie Andrias, refuted this and said that the department had followed all the necessary guidelines. 

“Our offices were closed and decontaminated over the weekend. The regional office only opened on Wednesday this week. We as a department will meet with the people that complained about our processes on Friday,” said Andrias.

He explained that the first case was reported more than two weeks ago. “All protocols were followed and all contact tracing was completed. Affected staff completed the 14-day self-isolation period.” 

Andrias added that the second case was unrelated to the first case. 

“The department contacted the Department of Health as soon as the cases were brought to our attention. Tracer teams are in the process of contacting all staff who may have come into contact with the second confirmed case. Most of the contact was medium to low exposure.” 

He indicated that all staff members who were in close contact with the officials who tested positive were requested to self-isolate. 

“Our staff need not feel intimidated and management will always be there to support them. We are adhering to all the protocols from the Department of Public Service and Administration. 

“The department is committed to following the protocols as outlined by the Department of Health.”