Parirenyatwa should quit

HARARE - Health minister David Parirenyatwa should just do the honourable thing and resign so as to save the little that is left of an ailing Zimbabwean health sector.

The doctors’ strike that crippled the entire health sector for more than three weeks is testimony of his shortcomings.

Parirenyatwa, who has now become a career Health minister, has over the years dismally failed to build a sound health sector and one wonders what’s so special about him that he is retained to the post every time there is a Cabinet reshuffle.

Since dollarisation of the economy, the minister has failed to negotiate a pay package for nurses and doctors with this latest impasse just a recurrence of past demonstrations.

We urge government to address the needs of striking doctors and find a lasting solution so that we avoid further loss of lives.  Patients were being turned away at all of the country’s public hospitals across the country because of the job action.

And unashamedly, the minister doesn’t dare to raise voice over this.

It is clear that our government doesn’t care at all about our well-being.

They do not feel the pain Zimbabweans go through as they watch their hapless relatives, parents and children succumb to treatable diseases?

On the other hand, we have a president  purporting to be busy — meeting several sectors, but skirting doctors, almost a month when they began the strike.

And when situations deteriorate to this level, we would expect human rights organisations to stand up and fight for patients.

Patients are dying while others groan in pain without any medical assistance, an abuse that has gone too far and needs to be contained.

It is also surprising that Zimbabweans are just watching quietly while their rights are being trampled on by the impasse between government and the doctors.

This predicament that we find ourselves in today must be addressed with urgency; in other functional economies a critical sector like health, practitioners would not have gone on strike for long without being addressed by the responsible authorities.

What Mnangagwa and his government fail to understand is that such a crisis affects all industries.

Some of us are saddened when doctors and nurses down tools because the majority of the sick are actually productive people — who have to fend for their families.

For the nation to prosper and flourish, we need all sectors to be up and running, from the health sector to the education sector.

Government has to engage the striking doctors in good faith so as to avoid situations where for instance Zimbabwe Medical Association and the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association recently refuted claims by the Health Services Board that government had reached an agreement with doctors, nurses and other workers in the health sector, effectively ending the industrial action.

The government has to handsomely pay doctors and nurses, not to mention teachers who impart the so desired education and skills to drive our economy.

It is sad when you see doctors carrying placards alluding to the fact that they earn $329 and you really feel sorry for them. 

What can a doctor do with $329 in Zimbabwe today because he cannot even afford a decent one bedroom flat? And this is besides money for his upkeep, his family and children’s education.

These professionals, nurses and doctors, have been degraded by an uncaring employer.

Comments (2)

Parirenyatwa is not going anywhere; at least not voluntarily (me thinks I sense a need for an "Operation Restore Medical Legacy" somewhere). He is a career politician with no other sustainable means of subsistence and will hold onto his post come hell or high water.

TruthSaid - 2 April 2018

Shame? This word is not in Zanu PF's vocabulary. Do you think we would have the same people making (the same) promises again if they felt any "shame"?

Sagitarr - 3 April 2018

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