Today's Labour News

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sandf thumb medium90 89Sunday Times reports that soldiers helping to enforce the coronavirus lockdown have been put at risk by sanitisers and face masks that do not meet safety standards.  

Sources in the defence force and the department of defence said the poor quality of such equipment had led to anxiety among the soldiers, whose health was at risk.  They said about R10mn had been spent on equipping the army with protective gear, which included hand sanitisers and masks, but claimed that much of the equipment, particularly the sanitisers and masks, had failed safety tests.  The tests, at the Protechnik Laboratories, found the hand sanitisers, procured under the watch of the defence force's chief of logistics, Lt-Gen Jabulani Mbuli, were either alcohol-free or contained only 40% alcohol, which was below the minimum safety requirements of the World Health Organisation and the National Institute of Communicable Diseases.  The sources and insiders also claimed that Mbuli and defence force chief Gen Solly Shoke had acted against the advice of the Military Health Services.  When the results of the tests were known, the two generals allegedly refused to recall the sanitisers and masks.  Defence force spokesperson Siphiwe Dlamini said that the lives of soldiers had not been put at risk.  He confirmed that Protechnik had run tests on the safety equipment and material meant to protect the soldiers, but said only “a few slipped between the cracks”.

  • Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Thabo Mokone at Sunday Times


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