The Zimbabwe Medical Association (ZIMA) has waded in the ongoing industrial action by junior doctors, urging them to respect the sanctity of life and follow due process in lodging their grievances with the government.

ZIMA represents doctors in the private and public sectors.

ZIMA Secretary General Mashonaland Central Chapter, Dr Enock Mahida said they have always been engaging the government on various issues affecting their welfare without going on strike and junior doctors should do the same to avoid loss of life.

This Tuesday, the Health Service Bipartite Negotiating Panel, which guides discussion of all the conditions of service and other issues of mutual interest met in Harare but the parties failed to reach a consensus.

The Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association (ZHDA), which represents junior doctors, expressed displeasure at the way negotiations are being handled during a brief to the media.

The junior doctors commended President Emmerson Mnangagwa for his efforts in securing a $25 million drug facility with the Indian government, with about 100 000 tonnes of medicine set to arrive in the country soon.

Speaking at a post cabinet briefing in Harare yesterday, the Minister of Health and Child Care, Dr Obediah Moyo applauded doctors who have decided to return to work to give ongoing negotiations a chance, promising that efforts were being made to address their grievances.

The minister implored the doctors who are still on industrial action to report back to work while negotiations are being finalised.