You are currently viewing our desktop site, do you want to download our app instead?
Moneyweb Android App Moneyweb iOS App Moneyweb Mobile Web App
Join our mailing list to receive top business news every weekday morning.

Zimbabwe billionaire to pay striking doctors to return to work

Strike began in September and has crippled the country’s healthcare sector.
State doctors currently receive the equivalent of $200 a month and are demanding that salaries be adjusted in line with inflation, which stood at an annual rate of 500%. Image: Bloomberg

Zimbabwean state doctors have found an unlikely ally in their four-month pay strike — telecommunications tycoon Strive Masiyiwa.

The founder and majority owner of Econet Wireless Zimbabwe has offered to pay them a Z$5 000-Z$10 000 ($290-$580) subsidy, based on seniority, for the next six months in a bid to end the strike that started in September and has crippled the southern African nation’s public health-care system.

State doctors currently receive the equivalent of $200 a month and are demanding that salaries be adjusted in line with inflation, which stood at an annual rate of 500%. The monthly rate fell to 16.6% in December and the national statistics agency stopped publishing annual data when it reached 176% in August.

The proposed payment will be made by Higherlife Foundation, the charitable organisation set up by Masiyiwa and his wife Tsitsi in 1996, according to Tawanda Zvakada, the acting secretary general of the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association.

The ZHDA represents about 600 members working at 1 600 government-run hospitals and clinics nationwide and “more and more doctors are now expected to return to work,” Zvakada said by phone Thursday.

“The doctors have responded extremely positively,” Masiyiwa said in a response to questions. “We also provide free transport to nurses.”

So far about 500 doctors have applied for the assistance and he expects that to double tomorrow, Masiyiwa said.

Besides Econet, Masiyiwa — whose wealth is estimated at $1.1 billion by Forbes — also owns about half of private company Liquid Telecommunications, which provides fibre optic and satellite services across Africa. His other assets include stakes in mobile phone networks in Burundi and Lesotho, and investments in fintech and power distribution firms in Africa.

Zimbabwe’s economy is collapsing. The government cant afford adequate imports of fuel, power and corn.

© 2020 Bloomberg L.P.

COMMENTS   7

Sort by:
  • Oldest first
  • Newest first
  • Top voted

You must be signed in to comment.

SIGN IN SIGN UP

A sign of black monopoly capital stoking the Zimbo economy?

But hey with a captive market, he knows the money will just come back to him!

So a capitalist has to bail out communists. WAKE UP ANC.

The communist has run out of other peoples money but is still voted into power. Where is the real problem?

Well done Strive. They should make you El Presidente……

Somehow I find it very difficult to feel sorry for the Zimbo masses….

You get the government you deserve….

The Zimbabwean govt. should be calling for urgent discussions with Masiyiwa and his company reps to see how the government can offload the majority stake in these healthcare provision services and allow the businessman and his partners to ‘run’ them as a sort of P-P-P partnership in which the government is a meaningful stakeholder but not managing. The govt. must be there to ensure that service is provided in keeping with aims and objectives to make the services available to all Zimbabweans at an affordable rate. Failure to engage now, will see the 6 months expire and most doctors may just move to greener pastures and abandon state supported healthcare provision facilities causing a major suffering to all.

And then we have those pathetic people that want to put a limit on how much a person can earn. They want to make the rich poor as well. And here we have Mr.Masiyiwa bailing out the failed Health System in Zimbabwe.
These super rich people do more for the communities than the governments do. They spread their wealth around to others, not to even mention the tax they pay!!!!

Hats off to Mr.Masiyiwa.

End of comments.

LATEST CURRENCIES  

USD / ZAR
GBP / ZAR
EUR / ZAR

Podcasts

NEWSLETTERS WEB APP SHOP PORTFOLIO TOOL TRENDING CPD HUB

Follow us:

Search Articles:Advanced Search
Click a Company: