Government doctors are set to embark on a nationwide strike once again. The doctors engaged in a debilitating industrial action for a full month early this year which resulted in a standoff with Vice President Constantino Chiwenga. The strike only ended after the government had addressed most of the doctors’ concerns.
The latest strike comes as the doctors bemoan medicine shortages, the current fuel crisis and the demand to be paid their salaries in US dollars. A debilitating fuel crisis has seen motorists spending long hours in long winding queues at service stations with some resorting to sleeping overnight at the service stations. The government blames acute foreign currency shortages for the latest fuel crisis.
In a letter to the Health Services Board (HSB) seen by NewZimbabwe.com, the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association (ZHDA) have called for a nationwide strike to commence on December 1. The letter read in part
It is regrettable therefore to note that as a result of failure on the part of the Ministry to urgently attend to these challenges, doctors are now finding it impossible to continue discharging their services in hospitals.
Of particular importance are the recently experienced acute shortage of fuel and an increase in transport costs which has overwhelmed and incapacitated healthcare personnel to urgently attend to their duties.