Dr Sidney Essien worked in South Africa for 15 years before he was dismissed in 2012 without a valid reason, disciplinary hearing or warnings. He is now suing the Gauteng department of health for R600 000.
He also said, that his salary was decreased while he was still working for the department. In addition, the department had blocked his staff number, a number every government employee receives, effectively stemming his ability to get a job at the KwaZulu-Natal department of health.
Meanwhile, the Gauteng department of health has denied claims that xenophobia was behind his dismissal.
Provincial health spokesperson Prince Hamnca said: “He was purely dismissed in line with the Public Service Act.”
Essien is now jobless, homeless and on the verge of suicide. His last bit of income was when he worked as a locum in January this year. His only source of income now is a disability grant.
He said, “I cannot go back to Nigeria. I do not have money and I am ashamed. Twenty years after my graduation I have nothing. No friends, no family.”
So sorry for him. Poor man!