Zimbabwe doctors who have been on strike since 3 September have turned down a $100 million offer by the country’s richest man Strive Masiyiwa under which some 2 000 doctors would have been paid an extra $5 000 a month for six months.
They said the offer did not provide a lasting solution to their plight but would reconsider it if their employer offered better conditions.
Below is the doctors’ full statement:
Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association Update Statement 29/11/2019
On Sunday 24th November, the ZHDA and SHDA met with a representative from Higher life Foundation and deliberated on their offer of financial assistance to government doctors.
It was agreed that feedback was to be given after consulting the ZHDA Constituency before entering into any memorandum of understanding.
As such, it was concluded that in as much as the support from HLF is welcome, it does not address completely the demands of the doctors for a salary whose value is preserved despite soaring inflation as well as the provision of adequate and appropriate tools of the trade.
It was posited that the offer from Higher life may be reconsidered once the stand-off between the ZHDA and its employer (HSB) has been resolved.
This recognises the sincerity of the donor group and its desire not to interfere with the negotiation process. The stipulated timeframes and terms and conditions surrounding the offer doesn’t make it a viable long-lasting solution that the doctors are in search of at the moment.
We appreciate the role played by the Catholic bishops which have resulted in the doctors being issued a moratorium, valid for the next 48hrs.
Sadly the moratorium has come without a new offer on the table having been communicated to us. Should this moratorium lapse without the formal communication of an offer that is reasonable, it would stand as yet another gracious privilege that is lost.
We would appreciate it more if the bishops talk to the doctor’s representatives first so that they are in an informed position to represent the doctors’ real interests.
We appreciate the role played by this latest intervention in a labour dispute that has gone past the 88th day and we reiterate that we remain open to dialogue, hoping that a lasting solution will be found without further delay.
ZHDA Information Department