ZIMBABWE Professional Nurses Union (ZPNU) has castigated Vice President Constantino Chiwenga is displaying evil actions due to his continued silence in resolving pressing labour issues.
ZPNU president Robert Chiduku said considering that government had for long neglected them, Chiwenga’s actions were evil.
This comes against a background where Chiwenga who he said had suspended all engagements between health related unions and has not held one meeting with them since President Emmerson Mnangagwa announced him acting Health minister last year.
“The ministry of health has with immediate effect banned nurses’ council from issuing nurses verification thereby thwarting the dreams of young nurses who want to go to greener pastures to secure a future for their families,” said Chiduku.
“The Exodus of nurses is a clear indication of a failed government which has nothing to offer except use of force. If you see your child rushing to eat in the neighborhood, then you as a father are a disgrace, you don’t beat the child, but you should provide the food. This government should simply address bread and butter issues only, that simple. The Zimbabwean nurses were neglected by the current government long back and this has necessitated their exodus to the diaspora in search of sustainable salaries, for the current government has nothing to offer them except propaganda, oppression and victimisation.”
Chiduku said Chiwenga should demilitarise his thinking when dealing with nurses as they had had enough.
He highlighted that the ministry had become an appendage of the defence ministry.
He added: “There is heavy military domination in the top echelons of the health ministry. The minister is from military, the permanent secretary is from the military, the director of nursing is from the military. The list goes on and this trend is disastrous. They have now hijacked the ministry.”
“We condemn militarisation of health ministry. The ministry of health has now become a subset of the universal defense ministry. Let the soldiers be in the army, they will do a good job there. They are now implementing their useless military philosophies in the wrong trade now.”
Nurses said they were worried to continue to work in Zimbabwe will further impoverish them hence their desire to leave.
“Most of the nurses in your hospitals want to leave, it does not make sense anymore to be here,” said a Harare nurse who requested anonymity for fear of victimisation.
Nurses earn around ZW$20 000, equivalent to US$100, on the black market and US$178 at the ostracised interbank rate.
Enticing wages and working conditions in Namibia, South Africa and the United Kingdom among other countries had been fuelling the exodus Chiwenga now seeks to stop.