Mkhize twerk protest nehawu

Photo: Nomazima Nkosi / Twitter

Watch: ‘You will not twerk here!’ – Zweli Mkhize ambushed by protesters

It’s been a busy 14 months for South Africa’s Health Minister Zweli Mkhize – so how he’s found the time to twerk still remains anyone’s guess…

Mkhize twerk protest nehawu

Photo: Nomazima Nkosi / Twitter

Sorry, what? Trade union Nehawu has gatecrashed a hospital oversight visit organised by Zweli Mkhize on Thursday – and issued the health minister with a bizarre warning. As well as making their list of demands clear, they also told the senior government figure that he should not ‘twerk’ for workers – and vice versa.

Why has Zweli Mkhize been warned against twerking?

Sweetness Stokwe, the regional secretary for Nehawu, led the vociferous protests. The union wants community health workers to receive permanent government contracts, to thank them for their tireless efforts throughout the pandemic. Stokwe and her comrades are also demanding a wage increase for medical employees.

However, it was her outlawing of sexually suggestive dancing that turned the most heads. Stokwe used some rather colourful language to insist that meaningful actions, rather than coordinated hospital visits, must be prioritised by Mkhize:

“The real reason hospitals are under siege is because there is no focus on primary health. Our people are subjected to inhumane treatment, where you go to the clinic you must wait outside. That is not only unacceptable for workers, but for society at large.”

“As Nehawu, you [Zweli Mkhize] will not ignore us. You will not come to our region and twerk here. When you are here, they are twerking of government officials!” | Sweetness Stokwe

Protesters storm Minister’s hospital visit

The so-called ‘ambush’ at the Gqeberha-based Dora Nginza Hospital saw Minister Mkhize exit the building in a swift manner. Nehawu officials have promised to treat all members of Cabinet with the same hostility, until progress is made in their bid to secure better terms for hospital employees. These demands were reiterated throughout the protest: