The Directorate of Public Protectorate (DPP) officers have been forced to relocate their offices as a result of what has been termed “unsanitary surroundings” at their Palapye offices. The office block which has been leased by the Department of lands since 2009 on a 2 year renewal interval, failed health standards, according to health inspectors and department of building and engineering services.
The office building has been inspected multiple times by the Department of Building and Engineering Services and Environmental Health Department which both concluded that the defects of the building negatively impacted the comfort of the building.
In September 2014, due to employee complaints, the Environment Health Department in Palapye conducted a health inspection and found them wanting. Amongst other things, they were reports of unstable and missing ceiling boards resulting in dust, fur and fiber glass splattering on the floor and people in the building; rat infestations which are the main problem leading to ruined documents/files, droppings and urine on tables, absence of doors to male toilets, roof leakages and unusable hand wash bins resulting in people washing their hands in the kitchen sink which is also used for drinking water.
DPP Officers have since been temporarily relocated to the Palapye Police Station whilst awaiting a newly leased office building.
Meanwhile health inspectors are said to have strongly recommended a medical examination of all employees who vacated the building, to ascertain whether their health has not been comprised by working in a hazardous environment.
“From a health and productivity perspective, the state of this accommodation was manifestly unsuitable and environmentally unacceptable. In my view, all the circumstances of this unsatisfactory state of affairs were attributable to lack of maintenance by the landlord which was condoned by the sitting tenant over a period of time, who failed to invoke the terms of the lease agreement in this regard,” noted the auditor general Pulane Letebele in his latest audit report of the DPP.