SOME graduating nurses are being asked to pay as much as K5, 000 for them to be recruited for employment in the civil service, it has been learnt.
A near-victim of the practice who spoke on condition of anonymity, appealed to Government to do away with the current recruitment exercise for nurses and revert to the old system to avoid corruption.
She said the current system was being grossly abused by some recruitment officers in the Ministry of Health to amass wealth for themselves.
Speaking in a walk-in interview with Daily Nation in Ndola, the nurse said she had been a victim of some officers demanding money for her to be placed on the recruitment list.
“Three weeks ago, someone called me on my phone claiming that he was from the Public Service Commission (PSC) and he asked for K5,000 as he had the link to the new list being drafted of nurses to be employed by Government.
“When I asked for details of the account to deposit the money into, he insisted that the system had people on the ground to collect the fees with assurance of being employed,” she said
But when she demanded for more details, the caller hung up on her and when she tried to call back, the line failed to connect.
She said for the last three years very few registered nurses had been employed and the situation was precipitating desperation among the unemployed trained personnel.
She claimed the new system of recruitment required nurses to apply for jobs or one to search in clinics for possible vacancy and then report the findings to the ministry.
She has also appealed to the Minister of Health Dr Chitalu Chilufya to look into the matter of practicing licence fees imposed on nurses that were yet to be employed.
“I completed three years ago and I have been paying for the practicing licence for the last three years despite not being employed. It is not realistic that we pay when we are not earning any income,” she said
She called on the Ministry of Health to get rid of this kind of corruption in the recruitment exercise which would eventually tarnish the image of Government.