WITH Health Minister Dr Obadiah Moyo following up on the National Pharmaceutical Company management tomorrow, the organisation is confident they lived up to what was required of them in clearing their Harare Branch Warehouse.
By Kudakwashe Pembere
This follows the Health Minister’s seven day ultimatum for the state controlled pharmaceutical distributor to ensure that the medicines are delivered several state owned hospitals around the country.
Dr Moyo told this publication that he would see if his directive was followed tomorrow.
“Tomorrow is when we will be at NatPharm checking if they cleared the warehouse,” he said.
NatPharm managing director Mrs Florah Sifeku said they cleared the warehouse as ordered working on weekends and extending working hours. She said this started after the tender which required companies to provide medicines in RTGS$.
“We have been working flat out since the 48 Hour tender where we knocked off at 12am and at one time I remember leaving the warehouse at 1 am to the Chitungwiza Hospital bus collecting medicines they had ordered,” she said, “During the easter holidays we were busy ensuring that the medicines are delivered. Otherwise, if you come today, there are people coming in to work form 4:30 pm to Midnight after those who started at 8am.”
“About the one week timeline, we called the hospitals with the assistance of the Ministry telling them to get the medicines. We have been delivering medicines. We ensured that medicines reached as far as Beitbridge and engaging other logistics companies like Bidulphs and Swift.”
She also said that the Zimbabwe Assisted Push System (ZAPS), initiated between the Health Ministry and donors that buy medicines in the country. Mrs Sifeku explained that they get the medicines in bulk from the buyers with some bringing in a year and half’s stock.
“Last Friday we held a meeting with the donors on the issue of the ZAPS and told them that the Ministry was concerned about it,” she said.
She also said at the moment they delivered medicines at Central Hospitals expecting to see the provincial and district hospitals covered by next week.
Mrs Sifeku said the Deputy Minister Dr John Mangwiro also noticed that the warehouse was being cleared.
On the issue of Paracetamol tablets, Mrs Sifeku explained that some of the local companies like Plus5 Pharmaceuticals despite complaining they could not meet the required amounts on the back of shortage of raw materials, managed to give them a reasonable amount.