Mater Dei staffer haunted over leaked ‘COVID-19 US$ memo’

A STAFF member at the Catholic Church-run Mater Dei Hospital in Bulawayo, who was captured on CCTV photographing an internal memorandum that announced the hospital fees ranging from US$60 to US$5000 before circulating it on social media, has quit.

BY SILAS NKALA

The worker resigned after management ordered him to write a report concerning his conduct.

An internal memorandum dated July 1 signed by the credit controller, Obedience Ncube, which went viral on Thursday on the social media, read: “Kindly be advised that all COVID-19 patients are required to pay a deposit of US$60 for casualty, US$3 000 for general ward and us$5 000 for intensive care unit hospitalisation.”

Following the circulation of the memo, the hospital human resources manager, Michelle Tembo wrote a letter on July 2 to Xolani Sibanda, informing him that he was captured by the CCTV at the institution taking a photo of the memo, which then went viral on social media.

“It has been brought to the attention of management that while you were rendering your services on July 1 in the high dependency unit at 10pm, you were captured on the closed circuit television camera taking a photograph of an internal memorandum, that was put up on the staff notice board which is located at the nurses station using your personal cellphone,” Tembo’s letter read.

“A review of the entire hospital was done and it shows that you were the only individual who photographed the confidential document on that day.

“May you explain in writing why you took a photograph of a document that is strictly meant for internal purpose?
“The picture of the document is currently circulating on social media platforms and you are, therefore, required to submit your written explanation and show cause why disciplinary action should not be taken against you.

“Your written report should be submitted to the human resources department tomorrow (yesterday) at 8am.”

However, instead of submitting a report, Sibanda resigned yesterday citing lack of freedom of expression at the institution.

“I, Xolani Sibanda, hereby inform you that I am resigning with immediate effect. I am not feeling comfortable that I have no room to express myself and my job treatment,” his resignation letter read.

“It has become unbearable to work under such circumstances and I would like to withdraw my services from this institution. It has been a great experience here. I am, therefore, grateful.”

Sibanda yesterday confirmed having been served with a letter demanding him to write a report about the internal memo leaked to social media and that he had resigned.

Tembo was repeatedly said to be out of office yesterday.

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