Zimbabwe’s doctors, who have been on strike since 1 December, yesterday said their strike was still on and they will only resume work when their grievances have been addressed by their employer.
Some doctors across the country returned to work yesterday with some areas reporting a 100 percent turn-out but the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors’ Association, which represents the striking doctors, said the “few” who showed up for duty at various hospitals did so as a sign of good faith but “remain in solidarity to those at home”.
The ZHDA said it held consultations with its members following agreement to end the job action in 48 hours and members felt that the agreement did not take cognisance of their immediate incapacitation.
There was no current offer on the remuneration of doctors and no timelines or evaluable targets for the provision of drugs and protective equipment.
The doctors also said they had no money for transport and the fuel scheme was obscure.
Members of the ZHDA executive met First Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa on Friday to air their grievances and she said they had agreed to return to work while she took forward their case.
The First Made is now under fire for engaging in activities beyond her mandate.
Deputy Information Minister Energy Mutodi, however, defended the First Lady saying she did not poke her nose into the doctors’ strike issue.
“Rather it is the doctors themselves who canvassed for her attention and as a mother of the nation she could not ignore them. The doctors believed she was the right person through which to air their grievances to the President and as the government we do not see anything untoward in her conduct especially listening to professionals whose strike action can trigger many avoidable deaths,” he told the Daily News.