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MBABANE – Minister of Health Mduduzi Matsebula says everyone who played a role in the ‘collapse’ of the health system will face the consequences.

Matsebula was speaking at the Hilton Garden Inn in a meet-and-greet event, with senior managers of the ministry. He said he would not tolerate corruption, and that all such elements would have to be removed for the ministry to provide a reliable healthcare system to the nation. Some of those present at the meeting included the Health Ministry Principal Secretary (PS) Khanya Mabuza, Under Secretary Ncamsile Mtshali, Director of Health Services Dr Velephi Okello, Deputy Director of Public Health Dr Rejoice Nkambule and others.


“You may be aware that I am not new to politics, as we have had interactions in the 11th Parliament, where I have been one of the legislators as the Member of Parliament (MP) for Siphocosini Inkhundla. I am cognisant of the huge successes that this ministry has had in controlling diseases such as HIV, Malaria, TB and recently COVID-19 and in reducing the maternal and child mortality. I am also aware of the challenges that the health sector is facing, which I myself have raised in Parliament and during Sibaya submissions,” he said.
The minister promised to working closely with the senior management team on these issues. “I know that together we can overcome some of the challenges that have burdened the health sector over the past few years,” he said. PS Mabuza said he was pleased to welcome the minister and also recalled that he had special interest in health issues, even before he was assigned to the ministry. “I have also seen his resume, which details how he worked in the transformation of the Eswatini Revenue Service (ERS). He is also skilled in forensic audit and compliance,” Mabuza said.

One of the priorities of the minister will be the establishment of a semi autonomous Central Medical Stores (CMS). He said this would be done as a means to improve the supply chain management system and save the country from wasting money on drugs that were either surplus or got lost before reaching their final destination. “We need to find a lasting solution to the drug shortage crisis, by attending to all issues raised at all levels of the supply chain management system; including the establishment of the semi-autonomous  central medical stores,” he said. CMSs in low-income countries are usually the backbone of public health procurement and distribution models. However, in practice, CMSs have had inadequate performance in areas that include procurement, financial and logistical management, security and storage.

The talk around transforming the CMS to a semi-autonomous institution started at the sunset of the previous Parliament, where it was revealed that a total of E40.2 million had been committed by the World Bank and the Republic of China (Taiwan) towards addressing the persistent drug crisis in the country. Semi-autonomous public organisations are ones that operate at arm’s length from the government, usually reporting to a ministry and mandated to carry out public tasks (e.g. regulation, service delivery, policy implementation) in a relatively autonomous manner (i.e. with less hierarchy and political influence in daily operations.)


Why sacrifice lives for personal gain? - minister

MBABANE – Minister of Health Mduduzi Matsebula says the shortage of drugs in hospitals must not be left to thrive while people continue to die. When meeting management of the ministry yesterday at the Hilton Garden Inn, the minister said people should not put personal gain ahead of people’s lives. “It is worrying when people want to gain wealth personally at the expense of human lives. We cannot fold arms while this happens,” he said.  He assured the workers of an open door policy, whenever they needed his help in the course of their duties.

“As an elected Member of Parliament, I would like to assure you of the love I have for the welfare of emaSwati and will consistently work towards achieving this passion I have. I also assure you of an open door policy through appropriate channels set up by the ministry to foster a culture of transparency  and open communication.” He said he wanted to see a happy team at all times. “Likewise, I will urge the same to me as we work towards strengthening the health system. I will be visiting the health facilities and meeting partners to widen my understanding of what is prevailing on the ground,” he said.

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