“We were given permission by the Eastern Cape health department to use the premises at Malabar Clinic as a temporary measure‚” she said.
On Wednesday evening the department of health said Helenvale Clinic would reopen on Thursday after an intervention by the police involving three specialised units to combat crime in Helenvale and other hotspots across the metro.
“This will assist us very much‚” said Eastern Cape department of health spokesperson Lwandile Sicwetsha.
“We don’t want a situation where our patients end up getting injured or killed by gangsters while visiting the clinic.”
Sicwetsha said the situation at the clinic was cause for concern. “Community safety is the responsibility of the police and the gang wars have been happening outside the clinic‚” he said.
“Safety of patients and staff is a priority. This matter is beyond our control‚ but we have to protect their lives.”
Police spokesperson colonel Priscilla Naidu said‚ “We have an intervention team comprising of 30 members from the national intervention unit‚ tactical response team and the public order policing unit… They are here for the next two months. They will work in the northern areas and the Motherwell Cluster.”
The Helenvale Clinic committee member confirmed with GroundUp on Thursday morning that the clinic had reopened.
- This article was first published in GroundUp.