A LOCAL non-government organisation driving the Prime Minister’s National Health Reform Programme has demanded that cabinet force Health Minister Dr ‘Molotsi Monyamane’s hand in endorsing a document allowing them to implement the programme.
The Pitsong Institute of Implementation Research (PIIR) which serves on the Prime Minister’s Health Reform secretariat has accused Dr Monyamane and ministry staff of sabotaging the programme.
Addressing a press conference this past week, PIIR Director Mpopo Tšoele said his organisation was “deeply concerned and frustrated by the lack of visible commitment” by the Ministry of Health to the programme.
“We have a role in health and we are going to play that role. We really do not know what authority the minister has to prevent activities relating to health issues in this country,” he charged.
“Showing support to the vision of the Prime Minister is not by showing up at the political rally but by implementing policies that seek to fulfil the Prime Minister’s vision, the health reform programme included.”
He accused Dr Monyamane of deliberately doing everything in his power to “block” the leadership programme, adding “that behaviour must be dealt with”.
Mr Tšoele said the minister was “blocking” implementation by allegedly telling international agencies not to support the programme.
He said PIIR had written a letter to an international agency, (name supplied), inquiring on the reasons it had not provided technical guidance on the programme as requested.
“They replied by saying they could only respond after the end of October because their country representative was out of the country on leave. Now we are reliably informed this is the work of the minister,” he said.
He also accused Dr Monyamane of failing to endorse a framework policy – a guiding tool for the implementation of the PM’s National Health Reform – prepared by the Boston Consulting Firm.
Global Boston Consulting Firm was engaged to provide health reform expertise, including drawing the implementation framework.
The firm had asked the ministry to endorse its findings after conducting research beginning July this year.
“As part of efforts to block this programme, he (Dr Monyamane) is refusing to endorse the Boston Consulting Firm implementation framework findings. We are left with no option but to make a presentation to the cabinet subcommittee tasked to lead the PM’s National Health Reform Programme,” said.
“We are going to present the Boston Consulting Firm’s draft report and ask the subcommittee to instruct the minister and his ministry to finalise these findings by endorsing the draft report so that it becomes ready for distribution.
“Without this framework document, we have no guiding tool to implement the PM’s National Health Reform. It is almost a month since the Prime Minister launched the programme and nothing is being done to implement it.”
Mr Tšoele insisted they would not sit back and “allow Dr ‘Molotsi Monyamane to deny us the opportunity to implement this programme”.
However, Dr Monyamane told this paper yesterday he was “shocked” by Mr Tšoele’s allegations and wondered why he had chosen to address the media instead of engaging his ministry.
The minister said he fully supported the leadership programme and in any event, it was impossible not to since “the Prime Minister has mandated my ministry to champion it”.
“We are not against this programme. We have given the Boston Consulting Firm an office within the ministry and I am surprised that Ntate Tšoele addressed the media without exhausting all ministerial leadership structures,” Dr Monyamane said.
“Ntate Tšoele is welcome to come to my office to present his grievances.”
He also said the two technical experts attached to the Boston Consulting Firm had not reported the leadership consultancy was experiencing any difficulties.
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