We also recommended that in the meantime whilst we are still trying to capacitate our local drug manufacturing companies, may the Reserve Bank improve on the disbursement of foreign currency meant for purchasing of drugs by pharmacies and the National Aids Council. We are aware that the Reserve Bank says that the first priority for foreign currency is for the purchase of drugs but Hon. Speaker, the money is not actually getting to those institutions that are meant to purchase the drugs. So, we recommend that the Reserve Bank should improve its disbursement of foreign currency to those companies.
We also recommend Hon. Speaker that the staff establishment in the health sector which was last revised in 1982 when the population was only 7 million must be revised. The staff establishment of the health sector should be revised so that it matches with the disease burden and also matches the size of the population that we have. From the time that it was revised up to now, the population has increased by over 100%. Therefore Hon. Speaker, we recommend that the staff establishment of the health sector be revised.
That being the case Hon. Speaker, we also recommend that the employment freeze that has been applied by Government should not be blanketly applied but it should make some exceptions. It should exempt such sectors as the health sector. There is no need for us to freeze employment in the health sector when the health service provider and patient ratio in this country stands at 0.07%. Therefore Hon. Speaker, we believe that the freezing of employment in the health sector should be lifted or it should be exempted.
Then finally Hon. Speaker, we propose as a Committee that some more sin-taxes should be introduced in order for us to fund the health sector. We have two examples namely; sin-tax on alcohol and tobacco, we propose that there should be a sin-tax that is introduced to fund specifically the health sector. We also propose that there be a tax which should be levied on all sugary food stuffs – drinks and food stuffs and get that levy to fund the treatment of non-communicable diseases. We believe that Hon. Speaker, sugar is a serious contributor towards non-communicable diseases that we have in this country. As a result, in order to promote a healthy eating habit in our population, but also to fund our health sector; we should introduce a levy on all sugary food stuffs and drinks. Thank you Hon. Speaker.