PRIME Minister Kassim Majaliwa has reiterated the ban on medical practitioners to order patients to buy drugs from non-designated public health facilities.
The premier said the malpractice was unacceptable as the government spent billions of tax payers’ money in supplying medicines to health facilities across the country.
He expressed the sentiments while addressing rallies in Kabwe Ward in Nkasi District and at Kasanga Ward in Kalambo, along the shoreline of Lake Tanganyika in Rukwa Region on Monday.
“ The malpractice should stop forthwith” ordered the premier. The premier reacted that way while addressing public rally at Kabwe terminal after learning that patients at the precinct were ordered by medical practitioners to purchase drugs from private run pharmacy shops.
Putting Rukwa region into context “ The Fifth Phase Administration has disbursed a lot of fund for Rukwa region to finance several development projects, out of which more than 4bn/- is meant for purchasing medicines” adding: “ In case of Nkasi District Council the government has disbursed over 700m/- to procure drugs ; therefore there are no reason for people to go out side the health public facility to get medicines ... I’m told the availability of drugs supply here is 96 per cent.”
Mr Majaliwa further said that the Fifth Phase Administration is committed to improving health care facilities as well as move health services closer to citizens for them not to walk long distances searching for the requisite health services.
“ In the contest of the country, the budget for procuring medicines has tremendously gone up from 31bn/- in 2015 to 270 bn/- this year.... “We have strengthened availability of drugs and medical equipments whereby we have increased its budget in a bid to improve health care services,” remarked the premier.
The premier was in Katavi and Rukwa regions for a two-day working tour. In Katavi Region, apart from other activities, he laid a foundation stone for the construction of Karema Port along Tanganyika in Tanganyika District, which is projected to cost of over 47.92bn/-.
It will be the major Lake Tanganyika Zone terminal which will be reachable by railway from Mpanda Town and is projected to be completed next year.
In Rukwa Region, the premier inaugurated Kabwe Port in Nkasi District, that cost 7.49bn/- and subsequently proceeded to Kasanga Ward in Kalambo District where he laid a foundation stone at the Kasanga Port.
Kasanga Port which is the largest port along Lake Tanganyika after Kigoma Port , is currently undergoing major expansion at the cost of over 4.764bn/-.
The premier urged the residents at Karema (Katavi), Kabwe and Kasanga Ward in Rukwa region to be vigilant against vandalism over the port terminals at the precincts.
While in Kabwe Ward, the premier laid a foundation stone for the construction of a mosque close to Kabwe terminal where he used the opportunity to remind Muslims and the rest of citizens at large to continue maintaining peace.
He further advised the citizens in the region to embark on palm oil cultivation as the government had decided to revive the cash crop, as one of the poverty alleviation strategies.
“ For those who desire to cultivate the cash crop , you will be given the seedlings when the planting season starts,” he further said.
He further said that the government had decided to give priority to palm oil production so as to address the shortage of edible oil in the country.
The premier instructed agriculture extension officers to provide necessary advice to farmers in their areas and instruct them on best ways of cultivating the crop from an early stage of processing and use modern inputs so as to boost productivity.