Latest President Measures Foreshadow the Health and Education Sectors’ Collapse in the Gaza Strip


Palestinian Centre for Human Rights, August 7, 2017

The Palestinian Canter for Human Rights (PCHR) is gravely concerned over the Palestinian National Authority’s (PNA) decisions against the Gaza Strip population that directly and seriously undermine their livelihood and basic rights. PCHR believes that exclusion of thousands of public servants, including thousands of the health and education servants, without any legal justification foreshadows both sectors’ collapse and suspension of basic services offered to 2 million Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

According to PCHR’s follow-up, on 04 July 2017, the National Unity Government issued a decision to put 6,145 civil servants in the Gaza Strip on early retirement, thousands of whom work in the health and education sectors. This decision would aggravate the already deteriorating humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip, let alone the inhuman and illegal nature of the decision that violates the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR).

Dr. Ashraf al-Qedra, Spokesperson of the Ministry of Health in Gaza, said to PCHR’s fieldworker that about 3,679 staff members of the Gaza Health Ministry receive their salaries from the Unity Government in Ramallah. Therefore, they are expected to be retired. Among those staff members are 942 doctors, including consultants and specialists (26%); 876 nurses (24%); 221 pharmacy employees; 96 X-ray technicians; 55 physiotherapy employees, 99 engineering and maintenance employees; 67 supervisory employees; and 22 engineers in different fields. Dr. al-Qedra added that putting them on retirement, mainly the consultants and specialists, would stop services, especially at hospitals offering treatment for serious diseases like tumors, cardiac problems, kidney, obstetrics and gynecology and at nurseries. This foreshadows a serious collapse of health services in the Gaza Strip.Mo’tasem al-Minawi, Director of the Education Ministry’s Public and International Relations in Gaza, explained to PCHR’s fieldworker that about 5,000 employees at the Ministry receive their salaries from the Unity Government in Ramallah and are expected to be put on retirement. Putting this decision into effect would break down the educational services offered to the Gaza Strip population, especially as these employees are experts in their field…