Resident doctors rebuke FG, vow to continue strike

Members of the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) have vowed Friday to continue their strike, accusing the Federal government of breaching the agreement reached between the two parties.

The government, as at Friday, failed to pay the salary arrears owed the doctors, contrary to its promise.

A member of the National Executive Council of NARD, Dr Arikawe Adeolu, reportedly complained in Abuja on Friday that the government had reneged on the agreement.

Adeolu, also the General Secretary of NARD at the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Jabi, Abuja, said as at the close of work on Friday, no member of the association had been paid.

The meeting on Wednesday between the doctors and the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole and his Labour and Employment counterpart, Dr Chris Ngige, was to find ways to end the strike.

The doctors are protesting the sack of some of their colleagues, non-payment of “skipping’’ entitlement, non-inclusion in the IPPIS platform and non-payment of their salary arrears.

In the circumstance, Adeolu said the association would meet late on Friday to decide on the next line of action.

“Since we held the meeting with the two ministers, nothing new has happened. We were hoping that they will fulfill their part of the agreement so that we can call off the strike and continue negotiations.

“But up until now (Friday evening) that I am speaking with you, nothing has happened; we are yet to be paid.

“After the meeting we had on Wednesday, an agreement was reached. Some aspects of the agreements reached cannot be fulfilled immediately except one.

“That is for the Federal Government to pay the backlog of salary arrears owed doctors across the country; it was agreed that these arrears would be paid latest on Thursday or Friday.

“With this in mind, we scheduled to hold a meeting on Friday to discuss the next steps to take in order to call off the strike but to our dismay, we are yet to receive anything,” Adeolu said.

He said that the Friday meeting would be closed-door, and that the association would release a communique at the end.

He, however, expressed optimism that the government would fulfill its part of the agreement so that the association could call off the strike.

  • NAN

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