The government has acknowledged the nurses’ grievances as genuine and valid following representations by the nursing staff through the Zimbabwe Nurses Association (ZINA), and the subsequent running meetings between the association, government and the Health Services Board.
In a statement to ZBC News, the Minister of Health and Child Care, Dr David Parirenyatwa said the nurses’ grievances require urgent attention.
Dr Parirenyatwa said the government has since instructed Treasury to look into the financial implications of the nurses’ demands, with a view to resolving them amicably.
He said in the light of this major concession by government, which has been made against well-known economic challenges facing the nation, in the interest of patients, and in order to avert any loss of life through disruption of essential services, the reasons for calling for the industrial action no longer obtain.
The government is therefore appealing to the striking nurses to call off their actions to make way for harmonious industrial relations.
Dr Parirenyatwa said the calling off of the industrial action is even more urgent in view of the high mobility in the country related to the impending independence holiday period.
He said as the minister responsible, he is also urging the striking staff to go back to work without any further delay, to allow government, through its appropriate arms, to finalise decisions on the matter.
Dr Parirenyatwa further stated that against this auspicious background, any nursing staff which does not respond and promptly report for duty as assigned will thus be deemed in breach of contract of employment, and thus deserving of appropriate disciplinary action.