Hakki met…. Do you know hakki?
A handful of protesters, met today at noon thirty in front of the general directorate of the Lebanese ministry of health…. they were chanting: “Hakki met hakki met… ala bweb el mestachfetyet“…
The general directorate is an old building near the Lebanese university, and the Museum square; The offices can easily get unnoticed, there are just 2 small signs on the balcony of the directorate;
The protesters are those who prepared the “hakki 3layi” campaign, my colleagues of CRTD.A joined them, especially the ACGEN team ( the one who launched the campaign for health and education for all);
The protestors voiced out their frustration with the health care system in Lebanon : there is No health care system in Lebanon;
“Hakki met hakki met”…. 3ala bweb el moustachfayet” Hakki is the arabic word of my right, and the protesters were chanting : ” my right is dead my right is dead… at the doors of hospitals”
The protesters chanted their demands, while standing near the “dummy” dead skeleton of Lebanese people who died because they were not allowed to be hospitalized ;
Yes, in Lebanon if an individual doesn’t have a proper health private insurance, or is rich enough to pay the hospitalization fees, it is very difficult to be admitted in the urgency;
As the slogans shows: the protesters highlighted the importance of health, the problem that many Lebanese have: they are indebted because of the health services they want; or they go to their political leader, and ask him ( usually he is a him) for a recommendation, and that causes the problem of “clientelism” in Lebanon;
One of the slogans that caught my eye was: your political leader is not your doctor…
The demands of the protesters were clear: the economical situation Lebanon is witnessing, is because of years of bad economical policies and strategies;
The protesters distributed a pamphlet were they explain that is it unacceptable to have more than 50% of Lebanese citizens without free health care, and it is unacceptable to have people dying because they were not admitted in the Lebanese hospitals ….
Lebanese people are not begging, they Want their rights!…
The minister of health Ali Hajj Hassan came down, and addressed the protesters,
He highlighted the fact that their demands are legitimate, and the Health should be a Right to all,
when the protesters said that they don’t have faith and confidence in him, and he is taking too much time to finish his health strategy,
he answered that with the governemnt, he was searching on how he can make sure that the taxation system can be more fair, how he can cover up the health expenses,
and he promised them to work asap on finishing the strategy for a health care for all, and submit it to the parliament for voting,
while waiting for the policy to change,
I hope that the Lebanese people take good care of themselves, specially with the bad weather Lebanon is witnessing, they shouldn’t be sick, sickness is expensive in Lebanon, Very expensive.
some pictures taken during the event: