Traditional Health Bill to be referred to Standing Committee

26 Jun 2014 15:30pm
WINDHOEK, 26 JUN (NAMPA) - Members of Parliament (MPS) on Wednesday agreed to refer the Traditional Health Practitioners’ Bill to a relevant standing committee - still to be identified - in order for the nation at large to be consulted on the matter.
The motion that the Bill be referred to a committee was submitted by Swapo-Party MP and Minister of Veterans’ Affairs, Dr Nickey Iyambo in the National Assembly on Wednesday.
To regulate traditional healers, the Bill proposes the creation of a traditional health practitioners’ council to enable those who fall under this category to issue workers with medical certificates which could be recognised by employers.
The council will control and exercise authority in respect of all matters affecting the education, tuition, training and qualifications of traditional health practitioners.
Another responsibility of the council will be to encourage and promote efficiency and responsibility in respect of practicing traditional healing, and to guide registered persons with regard to the respective codes of conduct and ethical standards relating to practicing traditional healing.
The Bill will also make provision for the punishment of any healer who falsely claims to be able to cure cancer, HIV/AIDS or other terminal diseases.
“The committee must be well-informed on this Bill to be able to explain to the communities how seriously this House is taking the Bill,” Iyambo stressed.
The Deputy Minister of Information and Communication Technology, Stanley Simaata, also agreed that the Bill be referred to an appropriate standing committee for it to be interrogated critically.
Referring the Bill to a standing committee means public meetings will be held to determine what Namibians think of the Bill.
A report will then be presented to the House.