Health Rights Activist Challenges Government on Recruitment of Front-line Health Personnel
A renowned Public Health Expert and Rights Activist Dorothy Ngoma has challenged government to urgently iron out concerns in the recruitment of front-line health personnel charged to contain further spread of COVID-19.
Zodiak spot checks in Nkhata Bay, Mulanje, Karonga, Chiradzulu and Chitipa districts indicate there is high discontentment with how the Ministry of Health has conducted the recruitment of people to work as Disease Control Surveillance Assistants DCSA’s and other cadres for various district hospitals.
Traditional and Local leaders in these districts are alleging that the candidates who have been picked for the jobs are either a spouse to senior health personnel, some did not go through interviews and a majority of them do not come from the host districts.
Chairperson for Mkumbira Youth Network Alex Chunda in Nkhata Bay for instance said, “most of the people on that list were not invited for interviews, some are spouses or relatives to health workers and they have brought people who can’t even speak our language (Tonga) here."
Ngoma has told Zodiak Online that positions for DCSA’s are supposed to be held by locals given cultural, language and mobility factors.
“It is a public health issue and you cannot pick someone from Chitipa to work in Nsanje or otherwise, they need to take people who know the culture and the terrain of those areas, government should do well to quickly fix this problem, someone had deliberately done this.”
In Chiradzulu councilors have since penned Principal Secretaries in the Ministry of Local Government, Health and Director for Local Government Service Commission to suspend the whole process arguing 80 percent of those recruited are not from the district.
Traditional Authority Mkumbira of Nkhata Bay, Council Chairperson Cyria Adam’ana Nyamwera and Member of Parliament for Nkhata Bay Central constituency Symon Vuwa Kaunda on Sunday resolved to take up the matter with District Commissioner Rodney Simwaka to review the names.
In Mulanje Karonga and Chitipa young people are also set to petition their district councils over the mater
Ministry of Health Spokesperson Joshua Malango had requested for time before commenting on the recruitment fiasco.