Nursing students left high and dry

18 October 2019 | Education

Disgruntled nursing students, some of whom have already completed their diploma course at the Rundu national health training centre, have laid into the health ministry over unpaid allowances they have been expecting since last year.

They say they were forced to find others means to survive during this time, as their parents refuse to believe that the health ministry had not coughed up.

The students, who spoke on condition of anonymity, explained they signed a contract with the ministry to receive a monthly allowance of N$1 000 each, while those doing internship were set to receive either N$1 500 if accommodated by the ministry or N$3 500 a month if they have their own accommodation.

They said last year they did not receive any monthly allowances and in February this year they received a lump sum of N$3 000 each, which they say was the back pay for the first three months of 2018.

The students say they have only received promises from the ministry, with the majority of them being owed N$18 000 each.





“We are tired of being told lies. They promised us for months that we will receive the money, but up to now we are still waiting,” the students said.

“We have not been getting the necessary support from our parents, because they do not believe our story when we say we did not get paid; they think we are lying and that we spent the money on unnecessary things, which is not the case.”

Some of the students, who are due to graduate in November, said they are unable to prepare for their graduation and that they are in need of funds to register with the Nursing Council of Namibia.

Health ministry executive director Ben Nangombe said the students can expect their monies soon.

Nangombe could, however, not confirm whether the students had been informed of this.

“That issue has been resolved. They might be unaware but they will receive their funds anytime soon,” Nangombe said.

The nursing diploma training course, which was launched in 2013, is aimed at addressing the shortage of staff at state facilities.

The programme is only available in Rundu, Windhoek and Keetmanshoop.

KENYA KAMBOWE

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