HEALTH Professions Authority (HPA) Vice President Ms Tendai Wenyika has defended her appointment saying it was constitutionally above board and open.
By Kudakwashe Pembere
Her defense comes at the back of massive backlash of her appointment by public health expert, Mr Enock Musingwini who claims on Twitter that she was, “planted there by the corrupt David Parirenyatwa against Health Professions Act.” Mr Musungwini accused her of nepotism favouring her ex-brother-in-law Dr Mike Joka.
He also launched a campaign to review HPA on the microblogging site calling on the current Health and Childcare Minister Dr Obadiah Moyo to review Ms Wenyika’s position.
On the HPA website, in line with Health Professions Act, authority members are expected to recognize the importance of good corporate governance and its impact on the internal regulation of the Authority.
The Authority is composed of fourteen (14) members consisting of the chairperson. Of each of the seven health professions councils, the Secretary of the Ministry of Health and Child Welfare and six additional persons (who are not health practitioners) appointed by the Minister in line with Section 6 of the Health Professions Act.
In an exclusive interview with Ms Wenyika, she said her selection for that much coveted position was through other board members.
“The Health Professions Authority consists of councils. These are not just councils aligned to health professions. But the act says the President and Vice President are elected by members. I was elected by the other board members. He is wrong to say I was elected by Parirenyatwa but the truth is other members selected me on merit and capacity as a gender activist,” she said.
Ms Wenyika added that as prescribed by the Act, fit for Vice Presidency is supposed to be a woman or a person with disabilities.
She was appointed HPA Vice President by then Health and Childcare Minister Dr David Parirenyatwa in 2016.
Zimbabwe Association for Doctors Human Rights spokesperson Dr Fortune Nyamande said despite the absence of substantial evidence to claim the alleged nepotistic appointment of Ms Wenyika, the Health Minister must investigate such declarations to inspire confidence in the health sector.
“Whilst at this stage there is no evidence of irregular appointment or conduct of the implicated official, we think the new minister must probe these allegations, reconstitute most boards in the health sector where undeserving individuals were erroneously appointed as this will boost confidence, cut red tape and promote health sector efficiency,” Dr Nyamande said.
Dr Nyamande noted the importance of Health Minister reconsider appointments by his predecessor.
“There is urgent need for Dr Obidiah Moyo to relook at the appointments at the Health Professions Authority, the Health Services Board, Public hospital boards, state pharmaceutical boards and check if the appointments are in line with existing legal statutes and if the appointed individuals are competent to hold these posts,” he said.
He said by doing this, Dr Moyo’s reputation will be preserved.
“This alone will give the new ministers credible partners in achieving his vision and correcting the ills of the last Minister,” said Dr Nyamande.