Resident Doctors Insist On Strike, Say FG Not Sincere - EDU-BIZNEWS


Thursday, April 8, 2021

Resident Doctors Insist On Strike, Say FG Not Sincere

The Striking Resident Doctors continue with their eight days old strike, dismissing the claim by the Federal Government that  the demands had been met 

Both Labour and Employment Minister Dr. Chris Ngige and his Health counterpart Dr. Osagie Ehanire failed to get striking doctors back to work with the payment of their outstanding salary arrears.

Ngige said that the Federal Government had  directed the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN) to open the recruitment portal, following the failure of the doctors to return to work

According to him,"The MDCN has been asked to open recruitment portal. We are appealing to the NARD to call off its strike. In fact, House Officers are not members of NARD.”

“We have tried our best to address the issues raised. As at today, the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation (OAGF) has paid the salary arrears of over 1,000 House Officers including those illegally recruited, the minister stated .

Also the Health Minister,Dr. Osagie Ehanire at a news conference marking the World Health Day in Abuja, appealed to doctors to call off their strike in the interest of patients at this critical time, saying this period is not a good time for doctors to boycott job.

But the doctors, under the auspices of the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), insisted on continuing with their strike because of what the association called ‘insincerity of the government to meet our demands’

The association in its communique  described the statements credited to Dr. Ngige as “spurious misinformation”.

While admitting that some house officers have been paid, the association clarified that many of them are yet to be paid, alleging that the payment  was marred by irregularities.

The association noted that the strike became imperative when it noticed that the Ministry of Health was not interested in any form of settlement to avert the strike.

It said the only positive result from the conciliatory meeting with the minister of Labour and Employment, was the abolition of the exorbitant bench fees being paid by NARD members on outside postings in all training institutions across the country.

“This”, it said, “is however not yet backed by a circular”.

The communique reads: “All other demands like the immediate payment of all salary arrears including march salaries for its members in all federal (GIFMIS platform) and state tertiary health institutions across the country, upward review of the current hazard allowance to 50 per cent of consolidated basic salaries of all health workers and payment of the outstanding COVID-19 inducement allowance, payment of death in service insurance for all health workers who died as a result of COVID-19 infection or other infectious diseases, among other demands are yet to be met

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