FORTY-six fired doctors have been reinstated after heeding to the moratorium extended to return to work without hassles, a Cabinet Minister has revealed.
By Kudakwashe Pembere
Addressing journalists at a Tuesday Post Cabinet Media Briefing, Health and Child Care Minister Dr Obadiah Moyo said 46 returned to work.
“The situation with regards to those who listened to the call from His Excellency, we have 46 who came back,and these 46 if they were dismissed, they are no longer dismissed, they are now reinstated,” he said explaining the doctors had to sign assumption of duty forms to document their return at their original workstations.
The Health Minister said the current establishment of doctors employed and serving in the public health sector is about 1 200 senior and junior doctors inclusive of the returnees.
He said Cabinet resolved that government is willing to continue engaging on the outstanding issues with doctors at work.
Minister Moyo added that Cabinet also stated that they will not extend the moratorium as per the doctors’ request.
“However, the fired doctors with extenuating circumstances that made them fail to heed to the moratorium may come and we can discuss their issue should they want to return to work,” the Health Minister said.
The Health minister said he was worried with the defiant doctors who stayed at the hospital. he also said the 56 senior doctors summoned for disciplinary hearings were pardoned.
Meanwhile, the Minister of Housing andf Social Amenities Hon Daniel Garwe said the budget for the development of offsite and on-site health staff accommodation was ZWL$160 million.
Still defiant are the junior doctors under the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association (ZHDA) banner who rejected the moratorium as well as the Higher Life Foundation Offer which they are being arm-twisted to accept.
“We have received information that members are being forced to sign assumption of duty which is now forcing our members back to work. Also government is asking for a list of those who applied which shows their fingers in this HLF plan.
“So we are advising our members to withhold the HLF application process with immediate effect. We will patiently wait in the trenches till there is a reasonable offer from the government,” said ZHDA.