HARARE,-- Zimbabwe's Health and Childcare Minister, Dr David Parirenyatwa, says the government is urgently looking into the grievances of the country's striking nurses as he urged them to return to work.
The nurses downed tools on Monday after the expiry of a 14-day ultimatum in which they demanded an improvement of their working conditions and allowances.
The strike followed failure to come to an agreement with the government during the two-week period and came on the heels of a similar industrial action by doctors who downed tools last month, demanding the same, and who only returned to work after reaching a compromise.
The nurses' industrial action has affected major hospitals and health institutions in the country.
Dr Parirenyatwa said the government acknowledged the nurses' grievances as genuine and valid and thus requiring urgent action.
The Government thus appeals to the striking nurses to call off their actions to make way for harmonious industrial relations, he said here Tuesday. This is even more urgent in view of the high mobility in the country related to the impending Independence holiday period.
Zimbabwe celebrates its 38th Independence anniversary on Wednesday. Holidays are generally associated with high numbers of road accidents that require nurses to be on duty.
Dr Parirenyatwa said following the appeal, all nurses assigned for duty should report to work failure of which they would be deemed to be in breach of contract and thus deserving of appropriate disciplinary action.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK