Non-Governmental Organization Centre for Democracy and Economic Development Initiative (CDEDI) led by former presidential press officer Sylvester Namiwa has called for the dismissal of Minister of Health Jappie Mhango following the closure of central hospitals across the country.
CDEDI said it is uncommon in Malawi to see someone stepping down and have since appealed to President Peter Mutharika to fire Mhango as the sit in happened under his watched.
Presidential spokesperson Mgeme Kalilani responding to the calls said: “No comment.”
Chairperson for CDEDI Sylvester Namiwa said the closure of the hospitals put lives in danger and it is a prerequisite for Mhango to be held accountable for his action.
Health workers staged a buoyant sit in across the country demanding that government should increase their risk allowances which was pegged at K1,800 to go up to K150,000 on the basis they are the front line in the fight against coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19).
Another plea was for government to expedite the provision of Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs)
Chairperson for CDEDI claimed what occurred is unprecedented.
“There were fears that our health system will collapse because of the scare of the coronavirus but it has collapsed due to carelessness and total disregard of the welfare of the workers on the part of government.
Namiwa a former presidential aide, said the workers have genuine concerns and grievances which ought to be ironed out.
“The closure of these facilities in the country begs the question about whether this government is really seriously committed to the fight against the pandemic.
He asked President Mutharika to call for an emergency meeting with leaders of association who look into the welfare of the health workers and chart a way forward.
Government bowed to the pressure of the health workers and adjusted the risk allowances to K60, 000 being the highest figure they could put on the table but they vary according to their grades.