There exists a brave heroic team, who remains unheralded, forgotten, unsung and unrecognized, at the coalface in the fight against the pandemic. Just like their counterparts who are medically certified, these self-sacrificing men and women place their ...
covid-19, africa, pandemic, hospital, cleaners, porters
There exists a brave heroic team, who remains unheralded, forgotten, unsung and unrecognized, at the coalface in the fight against the pandemic. Just like their counterparts who are medically certified, these self-sacrificing men and women place their lives on the line, exposed to all forms of danger as they play a very critical part in the national war against this worldwide disease.
These noble men and women are the hospital porters and cleaners, whose day-to-day sacrifices remain widely unrecognized and unacknowledged, but whose unremitting contribution is essential in stemming the tidal wave of the pandemic now reaching its peak across Africa.
A general worker at Tygerberg Hospital, Marilyn Padmaker says, “Working amid the lockdown, I have observed numerous changes in the manner in which I carry out my work”. According to Marilyn Padmaker, “ before the pandemic swept us off our feet, we had a daily routine when cleaning, now our cleaning is object-based. We are now expected to clean once or twice in every shift, making us busier”. “In my 12 years of working at Tygerberg Hospital, I have never experienced anything like this,” said Padmaker.
Porter, Mzwamadoda Tembani said, "working amid the pandemic has become very difficult and stressful”, he added that “it is essential for the government to expedite the concern of overtime payment, seeing to it that workers get proper catering and transport means”.
These workers carry the load, with a new day comes new challenges, which they have to face. According to Siyabonga Mziwake, a porter at Groote Schuur, “as long as Primary Protective Equipment’s (PPEs) are provided, we will get the job done. Sanitizing according to protocols, praying, and keeping a positive mindset is what gets us going”.