ONGWEDIVA - The Ministry of Health and Social Services said it does not have the capacity to employ the nurses who graduated this year on grounds it only has about 80 vacant positions despite having received 370 applications.
More positions will only become available during the remainder of the financial year through retirements, resignations and expiration of contracts that would not be renewed.
The revelation was made in a response letter to the mass application letter filed by 150 registered nurses who graduated from the University of Namibia’s northern campus this year.
In the letter, the Executive Director in the ministry of health, Ben Nangombe said the process to fill the available 80 positions will commence soon after it has been approved by the Office of the Secretary to Cabinet.
The 150 graduates had channeled a letter to the ministry to seek answers why none of them had received response on their status of their applications.
In response to the Executive Director, the 150 graduates said the 80 available positions is an insult to the registered nurses and the general public who spend prolonged hours at hospitals before they could be attended to.
The letter which is signed by the group’s spokesperson Jason Diogenus indicates that saying there are only 80 positions is denying that there is shortage of nurses in the health facilities.
“When government is saying only 80 of the 370 applications are to be recruited, they literally mean it is okay for the public to wait for two hours in hospital queues,” Diogenus said.
Going forward, the group is demanding that all nurses who have applied and have met the ministry’s requirement be employed by the ministry and other stakeholders.
The group further says that it can no longer entertain the ‘no money, no budget’ slogan saying that health is a national issue and it must be government’s first priority.
They have thus given the ministry until June 10 this year to give them a favourable response.
The graduates also teared into the ministry’s staff establishment.
Diogenus noted some staff establishment may no longer be relevant because in some areas, the disease burden has increased or the patient-nurse ratio has drastically increased and in some cases, the catchment population has also increased.
2019-05-21 09:45:08 2 months ago