PHM Zimbabwe Applauds WHO’s Stripping of Mugabe’s Ambassadorial Role 23 October 2017, Harare, Zimbabwe The People’s Health Movement (PHM) Zimbabwe applauds the World Health Organisation (WHO) for swiftly withdrawing the appointment of President Robert Mugabe as the WHO Goodwill Ambassador for Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in light of the current shambolic state of public health delivery system in Zimbabwe.
The movement was shocked by this inappropriate honour considering the apparent lack of political will to address mounting health problems affecting the country. First of all, financial allocation to the health sector has continued to shrink over the past years despite government commitment to the Abuja Declaration of allocating at least 15% of the national cake to health.
While PHM Zimbabwe acknowledges that the current harsh economic environment has bearing on the meagre resources being allocated to health, what is disturbing is that the security ministries of home affairs and defence always get well above the health sector even in these times of political stability and peace. This clearly points to misplaced priorities and political will to address the crisis in the health sector.
It should be noted that most of Zimbabwe’s health programmes are being sustained by donors without which, the flagging health sector would have ground to a complete halt years back. The Tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS programmes, Malaria, Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (MNCH) and community health programmes – all these are funded by donors. About 90% of the country’s medicines are funded by donors.