SANNAM saddened by killing of two senior Public Health nurses in Lesotho...

Media Statement

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

The Southern African Network of Nurses and Midwives (SANNAM) is highly saddened by the brutal killing of two senior Public Health nurses in Lesotho last week in the month dedicated to African Women, and would like to caution that this behaviour will lead to further drain of the already scarce nurses in the region.

The nurses, between the ages of 30 and 40 years, were found in the middle of the field just 5 kilometres away from the hotel where they were staying in for the duration of the workshop that they had attended at Mmelesi Lodge in Thaba Bosiu. They were beaten up, their heads were bashed and victims appeared to have been raped.

Nurses in Lesotho, led by Lesotho Nurses Association, will be marching to the Prime Minister to deliver a petition on the history of similar cases where nurses were killed and perpetrators never found.

Countries such as Lesotho are struggling to have sufficient number of nurses for their populations, let alone senior nurses with such wealth of experience, at the time of high rate of non-communicable diseases.

SANNAM is would like to urge countries in the SADC region to prioritise the safety of nurses as they are a very scarce resource in the region and some suffer brain drain from developed nations.

With the latest outbreak of diseases such as Ebola, which has now hit countries in West Africa, there is every need to safeguard the safety and well-being of health professionals in the continent. And the killing of nurses, as is the case in many countries in the region, will only worsen the conditions in the continent and SANNAM cannot keep quiet when these incidences happen as often as they do.  

The nurse-to-population ratio in the continent and especially in the SADC region, which is the most hit by extreme socio-economic conditions, is extremely high much to the compromise of quality healthcare for citizens.

“As SANNAM, we demand a full report regarding the death of these nurses and we call upon Head of Police to ensure that perpetrators are found and brought to book,” says Bheki Mamba, Chairperson of SANNAM.         


Issued by the Southern African Network of Nurses and Midwives (SANNAM)

For more information, contact:  

Bheki Mamba, Chairperson of SANNAM (based in Swaziland)

Mobile: 00 268 761 24086




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DENOSA Gauteng congratulates cde Thabang Sonyathi for his election as provincial Treasurer of COSATU Gauteng...

Media statement

17 August 2014

The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA) Gauteng would like to congratulate its current Treasurer, cde Thabang Sonyathi as well as NUMSA’s Motsamai Ponya, for being elected as the Treasurer of COSATU in Gauteng two days ago.  

DENOSA is confident that, under his efficient and leadership, cde Sonyathi will move the federation to greater heights. He has just been re-elected unopposed as Treasurer of DENOSA Gauteng at the recent provincial congress held from 31 July to 2 August 2014, which is a sign of confidence in and satisfaction with which he has handled the organisation’s financial affairs over the last four years. We expect the same of him in his new position.  

His election is a milestone to the organisation, as he is the first to be elected to the federation’s provincial structure, which is an affirmation of the correct political posture that the organisation is instilling in its cadres going forward.  

We are confident that he will serve the federation with distinction, having been through the organisation’s ranks over the years with full understanding of the federation. DENOSA wishes him all the best in his new challenge, and we pledge our unwavering support whenever he needs us.   


Issued by DENOSA Gauteng

For more information, contact:

Simphiwe Gada, DENOSA Provincial Chairperson in Gauteng

Mobile: 079 501 4869


Facebook: DENOSA National Page



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Southern African Network of Nurses and Midwives (SANNAM) urge SADC countries to practicalise commitment made ...

Media statement 

Wednesday, 13 August 2014 


The Southern African Network of Nurses and Midwives (SANNAM) would like to urge all 15 countries in the SADC region to commit in practice to the pledge made by health ministers of SADC countries on Wednesday to put urgent preventative measures in place for Ebola, as failure to do so is likely to put in huge danger the lives nurses who are the first health professionals to be exposed to the virus. 

In their emergency meeting on Wednesday in South Africa, among others, health ministers from the region committed their countries to identify and commit additional financial resources to support the outbreak preparedness and facilitate the exchange of information, and that countries should identify facilities where Ebola would be treated.  

SANNAM is pleased to hear that South Africa will be sending a team of four health professionals to assist in the outbreak of the virus either in Liberia or Sierra Leon to on the 17th of this month, because we may need the assistance of health professionals from West Africa if there were to be an outbreak in the SADC region. 

While the meeting agreed that South Africa should be the centre of excellence in Ebola diagnosis for the SADC region, SANNAM is concerned that the dire shortage of equipment, resources and non-functional equipment in many health facilities in the region may worsen matters if the Ebola outbreak could find its way into the region. 

“We note with great concern that more than 1000 people have succumbed to the virus already, and that the virus is showing symptoms of escalation,” says Chairperson of SANNAM, Bheki Mamba.   

“We emphasize the issue of the great need to supply preventive equipment for health personnel and provision of isolation rooms for patients in the health centres across the region, because the absence of these is what makes the virus to escalate, and sadly nurses and doctors are some of the personnel in greater risk,” he says.   

SANNAM calls on governments to monitor the implementation of the pledge and commitment made at the emergency meeting to ensure that indeed, practically, preventative measures are being put in place as a preparation for the outbreak. 

As sharing of information was highlighted in the meeting as the one need to capacitate citizens in the region, SANNAM would like to urge citizens in the 15 countries to observe the following consistent symptoms in their bodies and visit their nearest health centres as early as possible, because the earlier the Ebola virus is diagnosed the earlier the preventative measures will be applied by health workers:


  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Joint and muscle aches
  • Weakness
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Stomach pain
  • Lack of appetite 


In some cases, some people may experience:

  • A Rash
  • Red Eyes
  • Hiccups
  • Cough 
  • Sore throat
  • Chest pain
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Difficulty swallowing 
  • Bleeding inside and outside of the body

The virus is not spread through the air; it is transmitted to another person’s body through handling blood, saliva, vomit, semen or any other body fluid. For as long as your body does not touch any of the body fluids of a person diagnosed positively of Ebola, you are safe. 


Issued by Southern African Network of Nurses and Midwives (SANNAM)

For more information, contact: 

SANNAM Chairperson, Bheki Mamba (based in Swaziland):

Mobile: 00 268 761 24086 

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From Ntandane Nyebe, a nurse in Cape Town. 

As the backbone of any healthcare system in the world, it is my honest opinion that nurses deserve proper compensation for the hard work they put in in improving the health of South Africans. After all, nurses are the proverbial Alpha and Omega. The following 10 points are the reasons.    

1. We are short staffed- one person does a work that should have been done by 4 people.

2. We have gone through formal education, we have got degrees etc, we are accountable to a nurses' board, we got to be paid decent salaries like Pharmacists and doctors- YES.

3. The health institutions do not have enough of the unskilled workers e.g. porters and cleaners- Nurses are then forced to work as unkilled workers-on top of their scope of practice, when the need arises.

4. There are many instances where doctors go & do shopping at the malls when they are on call, or simply some institutions have shortage of doctors- when an emergency situation arises- a nurse does a work that was supposed to be done by the doctor to save the client. Same case when there no social workers- nurses must run around doing what was supposed to be done by a social worker.

5. We do a risky job - I've heard of many nurses & docs who died from contagious diseases- especially trauma staff.

6. The governing party admitted in 2011 that there is a dire shortage of nurses in SA, which means nursing is a scarce skill in SA and the last time I checked professionals with scarce skills were getting paid higher salaries in SA.

7. We work under bad conditions- institutions with no proper security, lack of proper equipment etc. But we always try and do our best to improvise for the benefit of the clients.

8. Nurses who go & work overseas they don't go there just for fun or to experience different culture- they leave because they feel they are being overlooked by Government in terms of salary- meanwhile SA loses specialised nurses with experience - Government who cares about its people would try and keep nurses by raising salaries.

9. We deserve better. Our Government can afford to increase our salaries by 100%. There is money in SA- we have seen structural developments in SA & they have been built by companies who have been paid millions and billions.

10. ANC Government promised to increase salary of Nurses when they were in Mangaung in 2012/13. 

I Thank You


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About us

The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA) in its current form was established on 5 December 1996.

The organisation was formed through political consensus after the transition to democracy and was mandated by its membership to represent them and unite the nursing profession. Prior to this, the South African Nursing Council (SANC) and the South African Nurses Association (SANA) were statutory bodies which all nurses had to join. It was also important after the transition to democracy to incorp... Read more