Teachers, nurses go on strike

HARARE - Civil servants — mainly teachers and nurses — yesterday downed tools, leaving tens of thousands of students and patients stranded, as they pile pressure on President Robert Mugabe’s broke government to pay them their salaries on time.

The Daily News established, for example, that in many schools in the Harare dormitory township of Epworth, teachers did not report to work, leaving frustrated students to mill around dejectedly, with no one to take care of them.

But the situation at schools was moderately unpalatable compared to the grim atmosphere that obtained at public hospitals, where the poor were left wincing in pain and desperation, with no one to tend to them.

Angry patients at Harare and Parirenyatwa hospitals described the situation as "depressing", as equally irate nurses basked in the sun on lawns disinterestedly.

In a statement on its Facebook page, carrying the punch-line “Our Salary, Our Money”, the Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) said that the strike by teachers was apolitical.

“Time to stand up and get counted is now. Be reminded all victories are a result of enduring pain, torture, intimidation, brutality, violence and even death.

"The independence we urinate on today has several graves ... we are calling on you to do the same today. Our action is non-political. We are demanding what is rightfully ours. We have not been sent by anyone,” read part of the statement.

The secretary general of the Zimbabwe Nurses Association (ZINA), Enock Dongo, confirmed that his body's members had downed tools.

“The reports we are getting is that some nurses are failing to report to work. They want to, but are failing to report to work because of the financial challenges. It is not a strike, but the nurses do not have the money.

"50 days without money is not a joke and these are people with children who go to school, have rentals to pay and their uniforms also need to be washed,” he said.

An elderly woman with a broken leg, who was accompanied by his son from Mhondoro Ngezi, and who had come for a medical check-up at Harare Hospital was left fuming after failing to get help.

“We came here in the morning at around 7am. We were told that we can come back on another day when the situation normalises, but we do not know when that will be,” the woman’s son told the Daily News, as his mother sat crest-fallen in a wheel chair.

A 36-year old woman, Memory, who was in the company of her mother, was also lying helplessly on the floor, with nobody coming to her assistance.

Her mother, Catherine Chipfuruse, said Memory had been "discharged" from the hospital even though she did not show any signs of recovery.

“She was discharged yesterday (Monday) but as you can see, she is unable to walk. One of the nurses came and advised me to go and pick up a wheel chair and bring back my daughter to the hospital, but as you can see the situation is hopeless,” Catherine said.

Comments (8)

govt must fire these mercenaries and replace them with graduates currently unattached

truth - 6 July 2016

shamwari truth my brother i am sure you are in the office alone today. the bull*hit you are telling us and trying to keep zanu going is not working. we are going to find you I can assure you truth your days are numbered and when znu goes people are going to find you and you will answer for your crimes.

petros - 6 July 2016

Truth - there is one combination that is very dangerous. ARROGANCE and IGNORANCE, and you are portraying that here and now. For your own INFORMATION the Unattached recent graduates, are also on a stay away X2. How on earth do recent unattached graduates in medicine and education for instance can just wake up on a mass stay away morning and fill in positions of the experienced incumbents??? Truth you are surely Demented.

ZimVendorisedNation - 6 July 2016

Truth if you are supporting Mugabe and his government for mismanagement of the economy better keep quite. Noone is interested in seeing people suffering in hospitals but we are tired of a government that does not listen to advice. Zimbabwe has the biggest cabinet in the world and the ministers are enjoying at the expense of the the tax payers' money. We need change of government today in Zimbabwe.

jojojojo - 6 July 2016

My fellow noble thinking Zimbabweans let's not waste time responding to people such as @truth. I think it's clear he never posts anything beneficial to anyone, @truth-une mwoyo wakaoma hama yangu, dai Mwari vakunzwira tsitsi hako. Everyone can see the situation in Zim is tough but i'm sure if we keep on working together like this tinoibvisa hurumende ye mhondi iyi!!

misty - 6 July 2016

Why this "truth" rigmarole does not just enjoy his ill-gotten Zanu fruits in silence beats me. No right thinking person anywhere in the world can find words to defend the festering Zanu. No one except those eating fully and directly from Zanu's parasitic accumulation of the peoples' wealth.

Yeoman Thomas - 6 July 2016

Truth uri duzvi

Ishe Nehoreka - 7 July 2016

@truth, God forbid that you call our doctors and nurses mercenaries. You have shown here that you are as heartless as the current mafia regime. It is a known fact that you need to pay your employee his or dues when they have done their work. Why not for once this regime fails to pay itself and pay the civil servants and everyone they are owing

pride - 7 July 2016

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