Nurses at Marondera Provincial Hospital have defied the provincial medical director (PMD) Simukai Zizhou’s directive of 20 April which ordered all workers to return to work.
The directive is a reversal of the bipartite negotiating forum agreement that was passed early this year that allowed workers to report for duty twice a week after they had complained about salaries.
NewsDay reports that the nurses at Marondera Hospital held a meeting on Monday and resolved that they will not observe the directive. Confirming the meeting, Zimbabwe Nurses Association boss Enoch Dongo said:
They met, they are now back at work after some discussion. We are not going to allow the PMD to change what was agreed before. He has no mandate, it is beyond him to cancel the flexible working hours. It is a baby of the bipartite negotiating forum, we discussed and agreed with the employer and we have a collective bargaining agreement with the government, which is a legal document that
cannot be cancelled at that level.
The government says that the fight against the coronavirus pandemic is overwhelming hence the need for all workers to be working.
This comes amid reports that nurses are ditching public health institutions for private ones offering better salaries.