President Sata urged to intervene in Nurses’ strike

INFLUENTIAL PF member petitions Sata to remove Wynter Kabimba immediately

President Michael Sata has been called upon to quickly intervene in the strike action by Nurses and other health workers at the University Teaching Hospital which has also spread to Levy Mwanawasa General Hospital.

Zambian Youths Association in the Fight Against Corruption (ZYAFAC) Executive Director Rickson Kenema has also called on President Michael Sata to remove the Ministers of Labour and Health for failing to bring to an end the strike action by the Nurses.

Mr Kanema has told QFM News that it is clear that the two Ministers have lost the respect of the striking health workers who have refused to heed to their pleas to return to work, and that keeping them in their positions is putting the lives of the patients at risk.

He notes that there seem to be no proper communication between the striking health workers and the two Ministers thereby continuing putting the lives of patients at risk.

Mr Kanema has also taken a swipe at the striking health workers for putting money first at the expense of human life.

He says health workers should realize that theirs is a divine call to save human life and not put money first.

Mr Kanema has since challenged those who feel money should come first at the expense of human life to resign because they are in a wrong profession altogether.

He adds that the continued strike by nurses and other health workers should be condemned by all well meaning Zambians.

The strike action by nurses at the UTH has entered day six today.

And Open Society Foundation is saddened that the strike by nurses and midwives at the University Teaching Hospital (UTH) has continued without being resolved.

OSF Executive Director Sunday Chanda notes that unfortunately, there is no taking of stock by the Ministry of Health on the number of lives being lost directly as a consequence of the strike.

Mr Chanda says the other worrying aspect is the pressure being exerted on an already fragile healthcare system.

He says while OSF is of the view that the reported K10, 000.00 demands being made by nurses is unrealistic, what is even of greater concern is the leadership or lack of it by the Ministry of Health and Ministry of labour in pre-emptying these strikes even before they take root.

Mr Chanda notes that the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Labour have failed to handle the situation and must be held directly responsible for adopting a lackluster approach to the matter.

He states that OSF believes that there is every need for new blood at the Ministry of Health which is proactive and yet humble to respond to challenges in the health sector.

He says the distorted message between the Minister of Health Dr. Joseph Kasonde and his Permanent Secretary Dr. Peter Mwaba on this matter is sufficient signal to President Michael Sata to seriously consider bringing in fresh legs at this strategic ministry.

Mr Chanda says the arrogance from the PS for Health, warning nurses and stating that Government never promised nurses anything is highly regrettable.

He states that the Permanent Secretary must know better that he is not being honest with his assertions and that this is not time for threats.

Mr Chanda has since called on President Michael Sata, as former Minister of Health, to make strategic changes at the apex of the ministry of health if it is to deliver and rise above present and future challenges.