The men and women of the bridge brigade, joined by CEO Wayne Duvenage and some other activists, also braved icy cold weather (and even some rain) to lead a peaceful demonstration at the Rahima Moosa Children’s Hospital in Johannesburg after Gauteng’s Department of Health first suspended, but then reinstated and intimidated Dr Tim De Maayer, a pediatric specialist at the hospital. Dr De Maayer’s “sin”? He wrote an open letter about the dreadful conditions he and his colleagues have to work under at this hospital, after he exhausted all under options to bring authorities’ attention to the life-threatening situation at the hospital. OUTA has written to the Gauteng Department of Health after Dr De Maayer’s suspension. We also support the “I Am” campaign, an open letter signed by more than 130 senior health professionals addressed to the Minister of Health and the Premier of Gauteng in which they speak out about the appalling conditions under which they work – conditions patients are forced to endure, and which cost lives. One thing this campaign proved yet again, is that one voice may be silenced, but a united front gets reaction from authorities. 

OUTA also held a picket outside Parliament to celebrate International Day of Parliamentarism. You can read all about our views on the importance of an effective Parliament that communicates with the public here.