Nurses protest against midwives’ promotions

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By Kanchana Kolagolla

Nurses protested outside the Health Ministry against the recent promotions given to midwives. 

Chief of the Public Service United Nurses Union (PSUNU) Ven. Muruththettuwe Ananda Thera said, there was no competition between nurses and midwives and they were not against promotions given to midwives, however, there should be a method. 

The Thera said, qualified persons should be given suitable promotions. He further said, nurses were given more than four years training whereas midwives had only a one-and-a-half year training. 

He accused the Health Secretary, Maj. Gen (Ret) Dr. Sanjeewa Munasinghe of creating a rift between nurses and midwives.

“What is unjust is unjust, whether it is the President or any other person. Our union stands against such injustice,” the Thera said. 

However, when contacted President of the Government Midwives’ Association, Devika Kodituwakku said promotions were given according to a 2016 circular. “No one can change it, even if they protest,” she said.

She warned the nurses’ union to refrain from meddling in matters concerning midwives as it only resulted in the violation of their human rights.  

Kodituwakku also said midwives have carried out a great service from grass roots level and now nurses were trying to forcibly take over their duties.

She vowed that midwives would take to the streets if the Nurses Union attempted to destroy the Health Service with their unwarranted interference.