Hospital chief in abuse of office storm
Michael Magoronga Midlands Correspondent
The Ministry of Health and Child Care has instituted investigations into a slew of allegations raised against Kwekwe General Hospital Medical Superintendent Dr Patricia Mapanda by her staff, which include abuse of office and corruption.
The disgruntled hospital staffers recently wrote to the ministry complaining about the situation at the hospital and called on Government to intervene.
Among a raft of allegations, Dr Mapanda stands accused of incompetence, abuse of the institution’s only ambulance, abuse of subordinates, converting fuel meant for use by the institution for personal use and overriding Government directives.
Secretary for Health and Child Care Dr Agnes Mahomva last week said her office was seized with the matter.
“I can confirm we have received the report and we have talked to the Provincial Medical Director (Dr Simon Nyadundu) to carry out an investigation into the matter,” she said.
“If there is any case to answer, the matter will take the legal route, but as for now, the matter is being investigated, I cannot say more as we wait for the outcome of the investigation.”
Hospital staffers who talked to The Herald on condition of anonymity for fear of victimisation, revealed that Dr Mapanda has literally personalised the institution’s only ambulance, which she allegedly uses to conduct her household chores, including fetching water.
“Dr Mapanda lives in Redcliff where water is a challenge, but she makes use of the only ambulance that the institution has to carry water to her house,” said a staffer.
“The ambulance makes more than 10 trips ferrying water on a daily basis, abandoning the hospital’s core business.”
Besides ferrying water for personal use, the ambulance has been utilised to ferry Dr Mapanda’s medication from Harare.
Dr Mapanda allegedly uses hospital funds to purchase her medication on a weekly basis.
Despite having a service vehicle which gets 100 litres diesel every week, Dr Mapanda has reportedly given the vehicle to her husband, Paterson Mapanda, who operates a private surgery in the CBD.
The husband has been spotted driving the Isuzu Twin-cab on private business while her wife makes use of the ambulance.
“She is the law unto herself. Recently in the January 2019 intake of trainee nurses, instead of recruiting only 11 trainee nurses, she recruited 21 against a Government directive,” said another staffer.
“And for that reason, the nurses have not been paid for the past six months as Government has been seeking clarity on the matter and she has been failing to explain.”
Dr Mapanda, who was on leave when the recruitment was done, conducted the interviews where she recruited the 21 trainee nurses.