NARD to embark on indefinite strike August 2

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Lara Adejoro

The National Association of Resident Doctors has directed its members across the country to embark on an indefinite strike on Monday, August 2, 2021.

This directive was issued on Saturday at the end of the National Executive Council meeting of the association held in Umuahia, Abia State.

The meeting was themed ‘The Nigerian Doctor, an endangered species: grappling with a pandemic, poor work place infrastructure and security threats.’

A communique made available to PUNCH HealthWise stated that after the critical appraisal of the performance of both Federal and State Governments on all the issues affecting the welfare of doctors and the insincerity of government in implementing the memorandum of action after 113 days, the NEC unanimously resolved by vote to resume the total and indefinite strike action from 8 am on Monday.

The communique was signed by NARD’s President, Dr. Uyilawa Okhuaihesuyi; the Secretary-General, Dr. Jerry Isogun and the Publicity/Social Secretary, Dr. Dotun Osikoya.

The council frowned at the delay by the Federal Government in disbursing the Medical Residency Training Funds to its members.

It also decried the undue hardship its members on the Government Integrated Financial Management Information System platform are facing due to the delays in payment of their salaries ranging from three to seven months.

“The NEC noted that despite Government promise to migrate her members from the GIFMIS to the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System platform, they are still stuck on the GIFMIS platform which is laced with payment irregularities.

“The NEC noted with grievous concerns the circular from the Head of Service of the Federation removing House Officers from the scheme of service and the consequent implementation by the Lagos state government.

“They also observed that some House Officers are still being owed one to two months salaries.

“The NEC noted that bench fee for outside postings by Resident Doctors has been abolished, however, some Chief Medical Directors have renamed the bench fee as training fee causing hardship on her members.

“NEC noted that with regards the non-payment of the National Minimum Wage Consequential Adjustment, the list of affected institutions and personnel strength had since been submitted to the Federal Ministry of Health as directed by the MOA signed with the Federal Government yet nothing has been done,” the communique read in part.

They also noted that the Chief Medical Directors in collaboration with NARD have submitted the list of salary shortfalls for 2014 to 2016.

The association is also displeased with the ‘merry-go-round behaviour” of the Federal Ministry of Health in disbursing the salaries shortfalls to her members.

“The NEC, in particular, demanded the immediate withdrawal of the circular removing House Officers from the scheme of service.

“Finally, the NEC stated unequivocally especially to the members of the public that the NARD is committed to the smooth running of the health sector; however, can only do so when our welfare is given the desired attention,” it said.

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