Asking For USD Salaries Is Insane, Gvt Tells Senior Doctors

THE Acting Permanent secretary in the ministry of health and child care (MoHCC) Dr Gibson Mhlanga has described demands by senior doctors to have their salaries paid in United States Dollars (USD) as insanity.

By Michael Gwarisa

In a response to a letter that was penned by the Zimbabwe Senior Hospital Doctors Association’s (SHDA) executive where they gave government a 14 days ultimatum to fix the salaries issue and shortage of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Dr Mhlanga said the US salary route was unsustainable and proven failed option.

Senior Doctors gave government a 14 days ultimatum which expires today where they indicated that they would down tools should government fail to rivet to the 0ctober 2018 salary regime as well as avail adequate PPE for protection against COVID-19.

The Health Services Board (HSB) with the guidance of the Acting honorable minister made submissions to the treasury to review health workers packages. However, the government is not in a position to pay salaries in USD, full US Dollarisation of the economy is a tried, tested and failed concept.

“By February 2018, the USD with citizens sleeping at the banks to no avail. Foreigners also descended on Zimbabwe in search of easily accessible US dollar reserves. There is absolutely nothing to stop that from happening again. Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is Albert Einstein’s definition of insanity. We have to be innovative and explore other ways of resolving these challenges,” said Dr Mhlanga.

He added that the USD was an American currency printed by the Federal Research and is not printed for free for other countries.

“Other countries can only access the USD through international trade of gods and services. The USD reserves generated by the Zimbabwean economy are not adequate to sustain import obligations such as fuel, food because of natural disasters, electrical power following droughts resulting induced generation, medicines and medical products and medical products aggravated by the COVID-19, industrial and agricultural just tom mention a few.

“Diverting the limited foreign currency to paying salaries is suicidal and social services provision. Printing the ZWL$ without consideration to the economic fundamentals is inflationary and Zimbabweans are experiencing a second wave of hyperinflation.”

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