By CHINOYI CHIPULU
Socialist Party has condemned the intimidation and arrest of Leaders and members of Resident Doctors Association of Zambia (RDAZ).
Copperbelt Party Spokesperson Joseph Kangwa said the Party demands that President Lungu and the Ministry of Health take doctors go-slow protest seriously, recognize their delay in responding to the doctors’ plight and seek solutions.
Mr Kangwa said in a statement that Resident doctors’ issues should be addressed as soon as possible to avoid putting millions of lives at risk as the country is already in an health crisis.
He said the public can be in a great danger than when health personnel are oppressed and then denied their right to protest.
Mr Kangwa said RDAZ have every right to ask for their salary arrears, payment of gratuity and other payments, and for the recruitment of unemployed medical doctors to improve health care in the country.
He said by speaking out, they are not breaking any law or committing any crime.
“We Condemn the intimidation, harassment, posing of threats and arrest of RDAZ. They are are simply exercising their constitutional freedoms in deciding to go on go-slow action after trying to engage Government for months to address their challenges.
“Contrary to the claim of the Ministry of Labour and Social Security Permanent Secretary Mr Chanda Kaziya, the fact that they are essential workers does not mean that resident doctors have no right to go on strike when they have been subjected to miserable and poor working conditions of service.
Mr Kangwa said it is wrong for Patriotic Front (PF) Media Director Antonio Mwanza and the PF itself to call for the dismissal of all doctors who are taking part in the go-slow protest instead of at least proposing, if not providing, solutions to the present situation.
“Mr Mwanza is insulting the country’s doctors and the Zambian people when he says that doctors on go-slow have no interest of serving people. These doctors have been working tirelessly for the past years just to protect and save the lives of the people of Zambia.
” They are the medical personnel who have been at the forefront in the fight against Covid-19 even at the risk of their own death and the death of their family members, “he said.