Dar es Salaam Regional Commissioner (RC) Said Meck Sadiki said there are a few doctors who have volunteered to continue providing services at public hospitals as others continue with the strike.
He revealed this shortly after officiating at the International Women’s Day celebrations in Dar es Salaam yesterday. This year’s day carries a theme, ‘“Participation of girls is enhancing development”.
Sadiki said some of the doctors who are still offering medical services have shown patriotism, since they value and put people’s health above their personal gains.
“I would like to commend some of the doctors who have positively responded to the government’s call. Professional doctors who adhere to their ethics can hardly strike at the expense of their fellow Tanzanians”, he said.
According to the RC, there are few doctors offering service at the Mwananyamala, Amana, Temeke and Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH). He said that medical services were being provided at health centres.
Sadiki said there is a group of people who are trying to convince the doctors who are providing services to join the strike. He said the government will protect them.
“We have reports that there are some people threatening the few doctors via mobile and text messages”, he said.
He said that people can support each other in demanding for their rights but not in killing others. He called on wananchi to continue seeking medical treatment at hospitals instead of staying with their patients at home.
The Prime Minister’s Office spokesman David Kirway declined to make any comment, saying since President Jakaya Kikwete will address Dar es Salaam elders today evening, he was likely to comment on the matter.
“We have nothing to say…we are waiting to hear from the President”, said Kirway.
At the Kilimanjaro Medical Christian Center doctors were on go-slow and held several meetings before deciding to join the strike.
Reliable information from one of the doctors who preferred anonymity said they are discussing a better way of joining the strike without affecting their patients and themselves.
“We have been in meetings since yesterday. We are discussing on what to do because even services are not fully provided”, he said.
He said they want to join the strike without entering into conflicts with leaders of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Tanzania (ELCT) who are running the hospital in collaboration with the government.
“We don’t want patients especially those admitted to suffer the consequences”, he noted.
One of the patients said services at KCMC were poorly provided, calling on the government to go back to the negotiating table with the doctors since the strike affected low income earners most.
Efforts to reach the KCMC Executive Director, Moshi Ntabaye proved futile as his mobile phone wasn’t accessible.