Over 100 Nurses under the employ of Harare City Council have resigned in protest over the non-payment of their Covid-19 risk allowances.
Operations in the local council’s clinics have halted due to the mass resignations. The absence of nurses to man various stations has caused authorities to close some of the clinics.
The government had pledged a US$75 per month Covid-19 stipend to all frontline health workers in government health centres and local councils.
The Harare City Council nurses complain they are yet to receive the promised allowances and have therefore resorted to mass resignation.
Harare North MP Markham Allan Norman confirmed the resignations. He has questioned Deputy Health Minister John Mangwiro and requested explanations as to why the government was not paying the nurses as approved.
The non-payment of the allowances also affects nurses employed by the Bulawayo City Council. However, there’s no confirmation if they joined in mass resignation.
Markham said “I would like to clarify on Covid allowances. The Covid allowance for nurses in urban areas as well is not being received. Harare and Bulawayo have both not received at the local government level.”
However, in response Mangwiro insisted government was paying the US$75 directly into the accounts of each frontline worker entitled to the allowance.
Harare City Council runs to main referral hospitals, Wilkins and Beatrice Infectious, which have been repurposed as Covid-19 treatment centre for patients in the capital city requiring admission.