“The country’s health sector faces challenges which include shortage of skilled personnel. These will not be addressed overnight, but over time” (…) “Our aim is to reduce the financially draining medical tourism where our citizens seek healthcare outside the country” – Vice President Constantino Chiwinga (Josephine Mugiyo – ‘Government aiming to reduce outward medical tourism – VP Chiwenga’ 15.07.2022).
The Vice-President of Zimbabwe, General Constantino Chiwenga has today addressed something important. Even though the message is fine in itself. His the wrong bearer of the message. Because, anyone who has followed his years in office. Knows that the VP has himself been a medical tourist.
The VP has in 2019 and in 2020 travelled abroad for medical treatment. A man or a person that is sick should be able to seek medical treatment. That should be an option for anyone. However, that doesn’t mean that everyone will be able to travel abroad for treatment.
VP Chiwenga has power and is a high ranking official in the Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front (Zanu-PF) and a the Vice President as well. This means that he abilities which other couldn’t afford or have access too. That’s why the VP could travel far and wide to get treatment.
Here is some stories… and what he did himself not to long ago.
“Zimbabwean Vice President Constantino Chiwenga on Saturday returned to the country four months after he was flown to China to seek medical treatment, according to state broadcaster ZBC” (…) “Chiwenga, 63, was airlifted to China in July for further medical tests on an unspecified illness. Before that he had been out of office for more than two months and was admitted in a hospital in South Africa before being taken to China” (David Ochieng Mbewa – ‘Zimbabwe VP Chiwenga returns following medical treatment’ 23.11.2019, CGTN Africa).
“HARARE – Vice President Constantino Chiwenga has been flown to China for treatment – just months after declaring that the government was banning health tourism, ZimLive can reveal” (…) “Chiwenga has received treatment in India, South Africa and China over the last year after going down with an undisclosed illness which manifested in loss of skin pigmentation, weight loss and an apparent skin irritation which caused him to sit animatedly whilst sweating profusely” (ZimLive – ‘Chiwenga flown out for treatment despite vow to ban medical tourism’ 08.12.2020).
If the VP had been anything alike other citizens in Harare. He wouldn’t have trips abroad to get treatment. Neither have the funds or the access to be there for months. People wouldn’t be able or have the funds to carry the costs of treatment for so long.
The VP should maybe seek medical treatment at Harare Central Hospital or Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals. Nevertheless, I doubt he would ever do that. As the VP he knows very well the state of the hospitals and why the health sector is having big challenges. That’s because the ZANU-PF haven’t invested or prioritized it. They haven’t cared or haven’t really been concerned about for years. The shortfall has been covered by the NGOs and CSOs. So, the ZANU-PF knows perfectly well why the health sector is struggling now.
The VP should personally not travel to South Africa, India or China for medical treatment. That is something he has does and everyone knows that. With this in mind, this doesn’t reflect well on his character. This is hypocrisy at its finest. Peace.