Mpumalanga health MEC praises Cuban doctors for serving humanity and slams capitalism for dehumanising medicine in SA

Mpumalanga health MEC Sasekani Manzini welcoming 13 Cuban doctors dispatched to Mpumalanga.
Mpumalanga health MEC Sasekani Manzini welcoming 13 Cuban doctors dispatched to Mpumalanga.
Image: Mandla Khoza

Mpumalanga health MEC Sasekani Manzini says private practice is one of factors that leads to a shortage of doctors in the public sector. 

Speaking during the welcoming of 13 Cuban doctors allocated for the province on Tuesday afternoon, Manzini said Mpumalanga was over the moon to have a portion of the 217 Cuban doctors in SA as it is dealing with the aim to lessen the grip of Covid-19. 

“Today it gives me great pleasure to welcome our brothers and sisters from Cuba, these are medical doctors and medical personnel who have left their country to serve humanity in the land of Nelson Mandela. The Cuban revolution dictates that when there is a crisis in the world its doctors are sent out to go and save lives.

We are delighted that today in our beloved South Africa ravaged by the Covid-19 pandemic we welcome the Cuban health professionals. It is worth noting that Cuba is a socialist country and those of us who believe in the socialist ethos taught by Karl Marx that each according to their needs. 

"The capitalist way of doing things has dehumanised us as profit comes before life thus in our country the deeper your pockets determines the quality of healthcare one receives. We struggle to keep the best doctors in the public sector because many of our fellow doctors upon graduating they go and open private practices because of the two health systems in our country which is mainly class based - the haves and the don’t have.

13 Cuban doctors have been dispatched to Mpumalanga.
13 Cuban doctors have been dispatched to Mpumalanga.
Image: Mandla Khoza

This is the spirit of capitalism that we have to deal with in our country. This is not the case in Cuba; these women and man we are welcoming today in the province, they take medicine and other related health fields and train to become health professionals because they want to serve humanity and provide quality healthcare to those who need it,” said Manzini. 

Manzini promised that the doctors will be protected.

 “We believe, as the unions have assured us, that the professionals will find a conducive working environment working well with our professionals in curbing the spread of the coronavirus. These 13 health professionals will be distributed to all our three districts, which are Ehlanzeni, Nkangala and Gert Sibande. I can boldly say that you will work well here and also connect with your brothers and sisters who arrived in the country in 1997 and some have retired and some remain in service in the Mpumalanga department of health,” said Manzini. 

Provincial secretary of Nehawu Welcome Mnisi said the arrival of the Cuban doctors will boost the staff of the department and they welcomed it. 

“As you know that we mostly have a staff shortage, the arrival of the Cuban doctors from a country which is our friend is welcomed by the unions and we are saying let them be treated well and find a good working environment so that they can perform to the best of their ability,” said Mnisi. 

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