By: Thoboloko Ntšonyane

MASERU – Following a prolonged period of dissatisfaction and frustration, healthcare workers working in the highlands will have their mountain allowances increased from June 2024.

This is according to the Minister of Health Hon Selibe Mochoboroane.

It will be recalled that healthcare workers had resorted to a protest, and downed the tools. The protest stemmed from their long-standing demand for an increase in allowances for mountain (highlands based workers).

Since its establishment in 1991, these allowances have been as they are at the time of protest, the Minister of Health acknowledged.  

In response to these developments the Health Minister addresses parliament, acknowledging the legitimacy of the workers’ grievances. He says all civil servants stationed in the mountains will have their allowances increased.

The sentence can be refined for better clarity and flow as follows:

He told the august house that last year, health workers through their representatives had an audience with the government where they tabled their grievances before a task force led by the Deputy Prime Minister and the Ministers of Health, Finance, and Public Service.

That act purposed the task force through the Finance Ministry to work on reviewing the allowances.

While the request was priced at M3 000 mountain allowances, negotiations with the task team saw the conclusion fall at M1 000.

Here’s a refined version of the sentence for better clarity and grammatical correctness:

After reviewing the affordability and sustainability of the tabled proposals, the Finance Minister resolved that they would receive M500 in June, M750 the following year, and M1,000 in 2026. These increments are regulated in 6 months timelines.

This increase, affects all 6,000 civil servants working in the highlands.

Here’s a refined version for more clarity and grammatical correctness:

“The Committee reached an agreement yesterday [Thursday] that the workers will resume their duties and end the strike as the government commits to increasing their allowances by M500 effective from June, M750 next year, and M1,000 the following year.

It was also agreed that it should not take another 30 years to revise and review these allowance hikes, as it becomes costly to increase them after such a long time,” he says, further apologizing to affected communities in the highlands during the workers protests.

More of the refined version:

The president of the Lesotho Nurses Association (LNA) Busa Qhala confirmed the decision to increase wages on national television over the weekend. 

He says workers would resume their duties following the implementation of government’s promise to increase allowances, starting from month end.

While MPs received the news positively, they expressed support for the minister’s office to assure the said workforce that the government would indeed fulfill its promise and not renege as it has in the past.

They inquired if there was any tool or law in place to enforce government compliance, to which the minister replied in the negative.