The Health Services Board (HSB) has ignored an ultimatum from the Zimbabwe Nurses Association (ZINA) to disregard Vice President Constantino Chiwenga’s directive to fire all striking nurses. Instead, the HSB has risked possible litigation by sending out letters of dismissal to the affected nurses to regularise the dismissals.
A letter written by HSB executive director Ruth Kaseke to the affected nurses reads,
This letter serves to communicate the decision by the Health Services Board (HSB) to summarily dismiss you from employment with effect from 17 April 2018 in terms of section 58 (i) (c) (ii) of the Health services regulations Statutory Instrument 117 of 2006 which provides as follows:
“…if the board has reason to believe that a member has declared or taken part in, or advised, encouraged, incited or commanded, aided or procured another person to declare or take part in a work stoppage or continuation of a work stoppage the board may summarily dismiss the member from health service.
The basis of your dismissal is that the board has reason to believe that you took part in a work stoppage on 16 and or 17 April 2018 notwithstanding that in terms of the Labour (Declaration of essential services) Notice Statutory Instrument 137 of 2003 nurses are designated essential service providers who are restricted from embarking on a work stoppage.
Chiwenga’s decision has been widely criticised and lawyers have advised the nurses to take the matter to the courts.
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