Zimbabwe’s efforts to fight the novel coronavirus (Covid-19), which has so far killed four and infected a total of 40 locals, was today hit a blow after nurses at Chitungwiza Municipality went on strike citing lack of remuneration, poor working conditions and failure by the financially struggling local authority to provide the medical staffers with personal protective equipment (PPEs).
State media reported that, during a courtesy call at council-run St Mary’s Clinic Thursday morning, doors were closed while a protest poster reading, ‘Feel for the health worker’, was placed at the main entrance.
The clinic staff were reportedly seated outside, and turning away patients.
Some of the posters, according to a Herald report, were inscribed:
“No PPE-no work, no covid allowances-no work, no lockdown allowances-no work, no food-no work, no pay-no work, no training on covid-no work, no covid consumables-no work.”
On the other hand, Acting Health Director Hebert Chirowodza professed ignorance over the nurses’ strike, saying he was yet to get details of the strike.
The Zimbabwe health sector has faced years of turmoil typified by lack of medical drugs, poor working conditions for health workers and perrenial labour strikes.
More details to follow….
Additional Reporting: Zwnews