EditorialHeadline NewsHealthOpinion


The animosity that exists between health professional and the Minister of Health, Ms Sylvia Masebo needs to be resolved.

And for this to happen, the minister must take the first step by apologising to the health workers for her verbal attacks against them.

She should realise that her success at the ministry depends on working together and respecting all staff.

Ms Masebo has angered doctors and other medical personnel for accusing them of being thieves who are in the business of stealing medicines and stocking private pharmacies.

Ms Masebo has been roundly condemned over this uncalled for accusation and we are surprised that she is yet to issue a public apology to the health workers.

She won’t lose anything by being magnanimous and admit that she made a mistake with her accusations that are devoid of truth.

It was wrong of her to blame the shortage of drugs in the country’s health facilities on pilfering by the health workers.

As Zambia Medical Association Secretary General Dr. Roy Tolopu has said, it is uncalled for, for the minister to attack the medical staff in such a manner as it has potential to erode public confidence in health workers.

Dr. Tolopu has instead advised the minister to stop witch hunting and find a permanent solution to shortage of drugs in the country.

The minister needs to make peace with professional bodies like the ZMA for she needs their input to make the country’s health sector tick.

The public is well aware about the root cause of the critical shortage of medicines – the politicisation of the procurement chain under the guise of cleansing the system.

Dr Tolopu also noted that the association and the public are aware that several tenders regarding procurement of drugs were cancelled and blaming health workers for the shortage is a fallacy.

These cancellations are what have resulted in the nationwide shortage of medicines as the government is yet to establish new “politically acceptable” suppliers.

It is therefore unacceptable that under such circumstances, Ms Masebo should shift the blame from the politicians – including herself – responsible for the shortages to innocent health workers.

And for a start, we implore the Minister of Health to do what is right – apologise to the health workers for questioning their dedication to duty and accusing them of stealing things that are not there.

Thus, Ms Masebo has no choice but to make peace with the health professionals and move on – a simple and genuine apology could do..


Related Articles

Back to top button