'Andidikwe': EC Health MEC Gomba apologises for virtual briefing blunder

Gomba was criticised after she was heard complaining about being irritated or fed up shortly after she concluded her remarks in the televised briefing on Tuesday evening.

FILE: Eastern Cape Health MEC Sindiswa Gomba. Picture: Healthmec/Facebook

JOHANNESBURG - Eastern Cape Health MEC Sindiswa Gomba on Wednesday apologised and explained her apparent irritation during a virtual meeting with Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize and her counterparts from other provinces.

Gomba was criticised after she was heard complaining about being irritated or fed up shortly after she concluded her remarks in the televised briefing on Tuesday evening.

In a statement, the MEC said she was not irritated by the meeting but was merely complaining about the uncomfortable clothes she was wearing all day and didn’t realise her microphone was on.

Most people who have been part of virtual meetings would tell you first-hand how quickly things could go wrong when colleagues, who aren’t too familiar with the various mediums, use them the first few times.

From constant checks to see if the audio is working fine, to people speaking over each other, it can get awkward. But for Gomba this moment did more damage than most office Zoom conferences.

Gomba, who has been under fire from those who say she had handled the COVID-19 outbreak in the province poorly, insisted she was committed to the fight against the virus.

“I understand the impression that was created when I said “andidikwe” ndiyatsha [I’m fed up and hot] during the briefing. At the time of saying that, I was moving away from the laptop and taking off the doek. I profusely apologise for the wrong impression that this created as I am committed in the fight against this pandemic,” Gomba said in a statement.

The Eastern Cape has more than 600 COVID-19 infections and 10 deaths.

For official information about COVID-19 from the Department of Health, please click here.