FOUNDATION for Democratic Process (FODEP) chairperson Gideon Musonda has appealed to the Government to accept the apology by dismissed nurses and paramedical staff who participated in the illegal strike.
About 40 nurses and paramedics in Livingstone have apologised to President Sata, the Minister of Health and the residents for participating in an illegal strike, which they described as unprofessional and inappropriate of essential workers.
The dismissed nurses, who read out the apology letter at the Livingstone General Hospital grounds over the weekend, said their strike was “disrespectful and lacked professionalism that was required of an essential worker”.
Mr Musonda said yesterday the nurses deserve leniency because their open apology is an indication that they have learnt their lesson.
He was, however, quick to stress that the nurses should “never again play with human lives by going on a strike”.
Mr Musonda said the nurses should have first exhausted all channels of communication before resorting to a strike which had put “the lives of innocent patients at risk”.
“As FODEP, we sympathise with the nurses because they have families they need to fend for, they have openly apologised indicating that they have realised the gravity of their mistake and we appeal to thepPresident to forgive and reinstate them,” he said.
In a separate interview Patriotic Front (PF) Libuyu ward councillor Reuben Kakwasha also sympathised with the nurses but wondered why they never listened to their union’s plea for them to call off the strike which has now cost their jobs.
“Their (nurses) unions had earlier pleaded with them to call off the strike because Government was still addressing their concerns but the nurses refused and even denounced ministers through the media…that was disrespectful and promoted lawlessness,” Mr Kakwasha said.
He, however, said “every human being makes mistakes” and urged Government to consider forgiving and reinstating the nurses.