All health centres in Ntchisi district, central Malawi have been closed putting lives of thousands of people in the district at risk.
Deputy Public Relations Officer in the Ministry of Health Mr. Adrian Chikumbe confirmed the health centres have been closed due to misunderstanding between authorities and staff over locum allowances.
His boss Mr. Henry Chimbali is aware of the issue but could not divulge more details.
Locum is an allowance medical personnel receive for working extra hours when he/she is supposed to knock off.
Said Mr. Chikumbe, “the health centres have been closed as a result of a sit-in that the health workers are staging over unpaid locum allowances”.
Mr. Chikumbe added that the District Health Officer in Ntchisi and his team are currently talking to the health workers to find a lasting solution.
ZBS reporter in Ntchisi, Mayamiko Kambewa, says the health workers stormed the Ntchisi District Health Office Monday morning in protest over the matter.
“The health workers told me that they have left keys of their health centres in the DHO office and said they would only resume work if they are paid their dues,” said Mayamiko.
There are six health facilities in Ntchisi which means that only the district hospital is operational at the moment.