Violent protests in Benoni disrupt normal hospital procedures – the staff are sitting in fear

They don’t care about people’s lives,” said Ken Ford, owner and manager of Sunshine Hospital in Actonville, regarding the protests which erupted in Benoni on Monday (June 26).

Service delivery protests raged across Benoni on Monday (June 26).
According to Ford, doctors were attacked and intimidated while attempting to get to the hospital.

Ford stated that paramedics were concerned about bringing in patients to the hospital.

“Someone needs to be held accountable for the damage,” said Ford.
“We have had to reschedule operations because doctors haven’t been able to get into the hospital.”

Ford went on to say that staff members battled to get to work or arrived late due to fear of being caught in the strike.

“It’s difficult to run a hospital in this environment; the staff are sitting in fear,” he said.

“There is no protection here – I have fear over what might happen this afternoon when they get back.”

According to Ford a similar strike happened about two years ago, during which he suffered injuries.

“It’s unacceptable. Something has to be done,” he added.

Several businesses in the area were allegedly closed due to a fear of looting.

“One doctor was distraught after a brick was thrown at his car on his way into the hospital,” said Ford.

A Farrarmere resident said her husband’s surgery was postponed due to the protests.

Her husband was admitted to Sunshine Hospital on June 21, in connection with a motorcycle accident in May.

“He sustained a wound to his foot in the accident, and it became septic, so he was taken into surgery on Thursday (June 22),” said the woman, who wished to remain anonymous.

“He was supposed to go in for a follow-up surgery this afternoon (June 26), but it didn’t happen.

“When I asked the hospital why, they said some of the doctors couldn’t reach the hospital due to the protests, while others’ cars were damaged.
“The hospital has been great so far; they mostly deal with motor vehicle accidents, but now they can’t because of the protests.”

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