By Sifiso Dlamini | 2020-04-21
MEMBERS of Parliament have threatened to move a vote of no confidence on Cabinet.
This was raised in the House of Assembly yesterday following allegations that the Bethel Court Hotel in Ezulwini was being used as a quarantine site for particular individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19.
Motshane MP Robert Magongo said it was concerning that there were certain cases which were being treated differently, as some members of the public were seemingly given preferential treatment.
Magongo mentioned that government had previously announced that all persons who tested positive would be quarantined in government facilities, being Lubombo Referral Hospital and the TB Centre in Manzini.
He, however mentioned that there were concerning reports that suggested the hotel was used as a quarantine site. He requested Cabinet to remove the people as they were exposing others to the risk of contracting and spreading the virus.
"The people in that hotel should be removed as this will end up in us passing a vote of no confidence against Cabinet," he said.
Lomahasha MP Ndumiso Masimula requested government to clearly indicate which facilities were meant to be used as official quarantine sites for individuals who test positive for COVID-19.
Hosea MP Mduduzi Mabuza enquired as to what criteria was used to determine those quarantined either in hotels and at the referral hospital.
He also enquired as to what criteria was used to identify the hotels or other quarantine centres.
Gilgal MP Sandla Fakudze enquired about their safety as parliamentarians since the facility in question was owned by Senate President Lindiwe Dlamini.
"How safe are we as parliamentarians as she could be exposed to people who are suspect cases or individuals who have tested positive for the virus in the facility," he said.
Ndzingeni MP Lutfo Dlamini echoed his colleagues’ sentiments and stated that the contradicting statements could lead to them moving a vote of no confidence against Cabinet.
He stated that it was important for government to provide Parliament and the public at large with accurate information.
He said Cabinet should work hand-in-hand with them as a Tinkhundla government. "We need to leave a legacy of a united front, as currently the system is cracking and there is a possibility of moving a vote of no confidence," he said.
Lobamba Lomdzala MP Marwick Khumalo said at first he believed in the system, but was slowly losing confidence in its effectiveness.
He mentioned that currently, regarding service delivery, the nation was being failed as the system, which was meant to prioritise the people was failing them.
In recent interviews with Health Minister Lizzie Nkosi and Tourism and Environmental Affairs Minister Moses Vilakati, they confirmed that some hotels could be used as quarantine facilities, whilst suspects were still awaiting results.
They stated that they were not going to mention the hotels by name to prevent stigmatising them once they re-opened for business, but stated that a number of the facilities that have suspended operations could be used and were approached.
Meanwhile, the legislators requested government to provide them with a report, detailing where the E100 million supplementary budget provided for the preparedness of the coronavirus had been used.
"The ministry of health should provide us with a report on how much money has been used and where it was used," he said.
Motshane MP Magongo stated that there was a need to monitor Cabinet with regards to the COVID-19 funds.
He said there was a need for a detailed report on how much had been used and where the funds were directed.
He further stated that there was also a need for the National Resource Mobilisation Committee to provide their own detailed report.
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