Botswana Nurses Union (BONU) has expressed disappointment over the government’s continuous failure to honour its promise to pay back allowance money for nurses' uniform.
The money, which is at P300.00 per month, has always been credited to the nurses’ salary until it was stopped at the end of last April prompting the union to write an inquiry letter to government’s hiring unit, Directorate of Public Service Management (DPSM). The letter was acknowledged and a promise to rectify the mistake was issued by government at the time.
However, a month after the letter was written and acknowledgment of the mistake made, the union is shocked at government’s lack of honesty and failure to credit the money as promised.
“We are shocked that DPSM has failed again to honour its promises to pay nurses their uniform allowance. The money is supposed to have reported on this month allowance but there is nothing and no explanation has been made to us even by the Ministry of Health and Wellness. This is not a good sign because recently we have agreed with the Ministry that some issues need to be resolved amicably without having to write each other letters through attorneys or the courts of law. This is a critical time that we need each other and have to focus on COVID-19 issues not minor ones. The Ministry must step up
He also said the practice is bad for labour relations and it will take long to make nurses have trust in the authorities.
Still on the matter, a letter written by DPSM legal advisor Tefo Bogosi on April 22, 2021 read in part “we, first and foremost, wish to humbly apologise for the logistical mishaps that occurred at the Ministry of Health and Wellness, which resulted in nurses not receiving the agreed monthly uniform allowance of P300.00 for the month of April. We have received re-assurances from the Ministry of Health and Wellness that the uniform allowance for the month of May 2021 will be paid on schedule in May 2021,”
“Furthermore, the uniform allowance for the month of April 2021, which is now in arrears, will be paid in May 2021.
It is sincerely hoped and believed that going forward the uniform allowance will be paid on schedule. Lastly, as agreed, we wish to re-assure you that the Ministry remains committed to effecting payment in September 2021 for compensation for non-provision of uniform in the past,” adds the letter.