Not many countries in the world can boast at having a surplus of medical doctors. Not even America. Not even Britain. Not to mention countries such as France, Germany, Italy and a whole lot of the world’s strongest of nations.
As the world population expands at alarming speed and new technologies arrive by the hour to save our lives, medical doctors remain increasingly in demand everywhere on earth.
Any country that has a surplus of medical doctors must, of necessity, be investigated, not praised.
In 2015, the Washington Post reported that America’s shortage of primary care physicians was receiving “considerable attention”. This while the Association of American Medical Colleges had predicted that “the greatest shortfall, on a percentage basis, will be in the demand for surgeons…”
To me, that report, which warned about a shortage of medical doctors in America by the year 2025, only dampens my spirits, considering how much it costs to educate and train a medical doctor in any country in the world.
It is hard and expensive enough to nurture, educate and train a medical doctor in America, let alone in a poor African country.
One thing I have admired of Zimbabweans is the simple fact that their hunger for their children’s education was never at any time diminished by the harshest of circumstances surrounding them and afflicting everyone else.
The thirst for education among the people of Zimbabwe is one legacy that we, whether we like it or not, appreciate without even thinking about it.
There is nothing that Zimbabwean parents would not sell, if they had anything, to get their child to school. Above all else, the hunger for education and desire for knowledge are a fruitful legacy from the colonial era that we were forced to embrace but still propel.
Last week, Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government in Zimbabwe fired 77 medical doctors who are not even asking for a raise but that their salary be pegged at the steady American dollar.
Now, trainee doctors have reportedly been deployed to government-run health institutions across the country, thereby not only destroying all their nascent professional legitimacy but upsetting the important role of the professionals who were teaching them at the same time they were treating the nation.
This just for the political expediency of an ignorant government, led by a man who has shown an amazing deficiency in direction, compassion and in basic understanding of leadership.
Is it a lack of understand, I wonder? We know what they want, but do we know how much thievery satisfies their greed?
Mnangagwa, in his wisdom, decided to fire 77 doctors who were patriotic enough to want to work in their home country when they are in demand a few hundred kilometers across the borders for much more.
Mnangagwa fires them. They did not even want a raise but enough money so they can get to work.
Doctors, like teachers, do all the work and yet are despised by their governments more than all others.
And, oh, yes, Zimbabwe is this month introducing a new currency which only works within its borders.
Zimbabwe continues to do retrogressive things that not only oppress and impoverish Zimbabweans but that affect neighboring countries.
It amazes me when I see presidents of Botswana, of South Africa, of Mozambique laughing and hugging in delight when then know full well that their camaraderie is oppressing and literally killing millions of people in another SADC country.
It was just unbelievable to see Zimbabwean government officials leading SADC election observer delegations to Botswana and Mozambique. This was more than insulting and whoever is funding SADC must forthwith stop wasting their money.
How, really, can anyone accept Zimbabwe pronouncing an election anywhere as free and fair?
SADC does and SADC is complicit in the abuse, killings and mistreatment on men, women and children in the region.
It is not possible to understand the role SADC is supposed to play. Other countries are solving their own problems without even invoking the African Union, the grotesque parent of SADC.
The African Union was formed to retard the advancement of African people. And SADC is the enthusiastic puppy that pees on the sofa and gets a head rub.
There is a shortage of everything in Africa, except minerals. Africa is wealthy. Africa produces millionaires and billionaires while millions of Africans are starving.
African presidents are among the richest in the world. They are a cartel. They are abusers. They do as they please and rarely are asked to explain how they got their wealth.
Of cause, foreign countries in Europe and America are to blame because they accept extravagant amounts of money into personal bank accounts of foreign leaders, particularly African leaders, with no questions asked – yet in America, moving an amount of cash as little as $5000 raises a red flag.
The African Union, SADC and the continent’s leaders do not care. They never did and never will.
The slowly emerging trend of bringing before the courts those who benefitted from or engaged in corrupt practices while in office is commendable although, so far, it has shown to be all a charade as we continue to witness in Zimbabwe since Robert Mugabe was overthrown.
The rot, not only in Zimbabwe but elsewhere in Africa, must be stopped yet countries that should be contributing towards curtailing these criminal activities (like South Africa and Botswana) are busy puffing up their chests for being anointed as legitimate by corrupted governments. What business did Zimbabwe have in “monitoring” elections in Botswana and Mozambique?
The abuse and firing of medical doctors by the government of Zimbabwe is not only retrogressive but totally misguided.
When Zanu-PF bigwigs or members of their families fall ill, they hire private jets to foreign lands where they get expert medical attention at the expense of the citizens of Zimbabwe.
When the meagerly paid doctors say they do not have enough to even board the bus to work, they are abducted and tortured.
From their hospital beds in China, Singapore, South Africa and elsewhere, the Zanu-PF bigwigs are firing our doctors.
Zanu-PF is not only destroying the patients’ lives, it is destroying the professionals that the country struggled to produce and cannot afford to lose.
Thank you, SADC. Thank you very much.