…By Larry John for TDPel Media.
The Eastern Cape police are searching for four individuals responsible for the killing of a doctor at his private medical workplace in Gqeberha on Wednesday night.
The victim has been identified as Bantu Noqekwa, and the police say that four armed men entered his surgery in Njoli Street, Zwide, at around 19:00 and shot him in the head.
Captain Andre Beetge, a police spokesperson, explained that the doctor was killed at the scene, and the suspects fled.
The police have yet to determine a motive for the killing, and investigations are underway.
Health Department Laments the Crime
The Provincial Health Department has expressed its sadness and concern over the increasing number of attacks on medical professionals in the area.
The department stated that the murder of Dr Noqekwa is a senseless and callous killing that has deprived the community of a highly qualified general practitioner.
The department further conveyed their condolences to the family, friends, colleagues, and patients of the slain doctor, and condemned the ongoing attacks on healthcare workers.
The department also revealed that they had received information about a robbery at another doctor’s practice in the same area on the same night.
Analysis and Commentaries
The killing of Dr Bantu Noqekwa is a tragic loss for his family, patients, and the medical fraternity in South Africa.
It is also a sad reminder of the escalating violent crimes in the country, particularly against medical professionals who have been targeted in recent years.
The South African Medical Association (SAMA) has reported that more than 70 doctors have been killed in the country since 2004, with some attacks linked to their race, while others are robberies.
The growing number of attacks on healthcare workers is a worrying trend that must be addressed by the authorities.
The Eastern Cape Department of Health’s response to the murder of Dr Noqekwa is commendable, and their call for an end to these senseless attacks is timely.
The department’s acknowledgement of the critical role that doctors and other healthcare workers play in society is also essential, and their condemnation of the violence against them is appropriate.
However, the government needs to do more to ensure that medical professionals are protected and that their safety is guaranteed.
This could be achieved by providing them with adequate security measures and addressing the underlying causes of the violence, such as poverty, inequality, and a lack of access to healthcare services.
In conclusion, the murder of Dr Noqekwa is a tragedy that should not be ignored or forgotten.
It is a wake-up call to the government, healthcare sector, and the public to take action to prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future.
The medical profession is a vital part of society, and the safety and wellbeing of its members should be a top priority.
The government must work with healthcare professionals and other stakeholders to develop effective solutions to the ongoing attacks on medical practitioners.
Only then can we hope to see a safer and more secure future for healthcare workers in South Africa.