The Gauteng department of health does not employ Aids
counsellors, it said on Wednesday.
"Aids counsellors are employed by NGOs, who in turn enter into
agreement with the Gauteng health department for funding towards
this service," spokesman JP Louw said in a statement.
No pay since March
This came after the Democratic Alliance in Gauteng said 2000
voluntary HIV/Aids counsellors and courtesy managers have not been
paid their monthly R1000 stipend since March this year.
Louw said problems experienced in signing contracts and
allocations have resulted in a month's delay in processing
"The department has been in the process of applying pressure for
submission of outstanding documentation, and the MEC for health and
social development, Qedani Mahlangu, has instructed that the matter
be resolved by Friday," he said.
DA spokesman on health Jack Bloom said the counsellors were the
latest victims of the Gauteng health department's inability to
budget properly and to pay timeously.
"These lay counsellors perform an invaluable role, yet many now
cannot even afford transport to come to work," he said.
Not the first time
He said pay interruptions had occurred several times over the
past few years. The department said to date payment had been approved and
processed for 767 counsellors.
"It is not possible to speculate on the number of outstanding
(2000) as these can only be confirmed against approved and
contracted NGOs and the list of counsellors they submit," Louw
said. - (Sapa, May 2009)
Early HIV treatment best