Doctors intensify strike despite abduction of their leader

The Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association (ZHDA), has strengthened its call for doctors to stay away from work until the whereabouts of its leader, Dr Peter Magombeyi are known.

Dr Magombeyi was acting president of ZHDA and was on the fore front calling on doctors to down tools until their concerns are addressed.

But he was abducted by unknown assailants Saturday evening at Budiriro Suburb around 10pm.

In a statement, ZHDA advised doctors to stay away from their workplace until the whereabouts of their colleague and leader are known.

“At all Government hospitals, we are priming the whole membership for widespread demonstrations in protest against this direct violation of the fundamental right of every Zimbabwean citizen to move freely anywhere in the country without having to fear for their lives,” said ZHDA Information department.

ZDHA has also condemned Dr Magombeyi’s abduction calling upon authorities to start investigations immediately.

 “ZHDA is dismayed and shocked by reports of alleged abduction of its acting President Peter Magombeyi who has gone missing since the evening of yesterday at 10 PM in Budiriro.

“We publicly denounce and condemn in the strongest possible terms this display of terror and barbarism towards the President of ZHDA and further advice the Government of Zimbabwe to urgently institute necessary investigative work to ascertain his whereabouts,” said the Information department in a statement.

ZHDA said they would continue demanding dignified salaries for all government doctors in the country.

“We further warn those behind this barbaric act of abducting Dr Magombeyi that ZHDA  and its whole membership will continue digging even in the trenches to demand a fair, just and dignified salary for all government doctors.”

Dr Norman Matara from the Zimbabwe Association for Doctors for Human Rights (ZADHR), also said that the abduction was worrying and caused more alarm.

He noted that Dr Magombeyi had been receiving threatening messages following the doctors’ industrial action.

“We were aware that he has been receiving threatening messages as they were accusing him of calling an industrial action. We were alerted that he was approached by three unidentified men. Ever since we have been trying his mobile number but it’s not going through and he has not communicated with us since then,” Dr Matara said.

Doctors have been on an industrial action in the past weeks crying incapacitation, as government failed to adjust their salaries to match the interbank market exchange rate following high cost of living, only cushioning them with cushioned with meagre allowances.

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