Doctors turn to international community over missing colleague

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By Paidashe Mandivengerei

DESPERATE medical practitioners in Zimbabwe, worried about the safety of missing doctor Peter Magombeyi, have turned to the international community for assistance.

Magombeyi, who was allegedly abducted on Saturday, has not been heard from since then.

Zimbabwe Hospitals Doctors Association (ZHDA) acting president, Magombeyi who has been missing for four days now, was reportedly seized by three men in Budiriro, Harare and striking doctors have intensified their job action demanding his safe return.

Doctors have since been joined by health workers who have vowed they will only return to work if Magombeyi is returned safely.

Speaking after handing over a petition to Speaker of Parliament, Jacob Mudenda demanding Magombeyi’s safe return and improved working conditions, ZHDA secretary general, Dr Tawanda Zvakada said after appealing for help from the Executive, Legislature and Judiciary locally, they will now approach international organisations.

Government has set up an investigating body to look into Magombeyi’s disappearance but very little to no information has been forthcoming.

“We (health workers) have now addressed all the three structures that govern this nation.

“We have addressed the executive and we have addressed the judiciary and we have now addressed parliament. We are now calling on the international community to assist us as the health care workers and for us to resolve this impasse because the situation in our hospitals is so saddening and we don’t draw any pleasure from it. The sooner it ends, the better for us,” Zvakanda told journalists Thursday.

The health workers solidarity march to hand over their petition to the National Assembly was also attended by prominent human rights activists, Tatenda Mombeyarara and Evan Mawarire.

At the time of his disappearance, Magombeyi was representing doctors and nurses in negotiating for better working conditions and salaries.