By Ojoachele Ejigbo
Resident doctors in Nigeria have issued a 21 day ultimatum to the federal government to meet their demands else they will embark on a nationwide strike.
The doctors made this known in a statement signed by its president, Onyebueze John, secretary general, Aneke Emmanuel, and publicity secretary, Asinobi Ugoeze.
In the statement, the resident doctors called on the government to address “The circularization of house officer entry point despite various collective agreements on same. The plan of the federal government to stagnate the promotion of resident doctors.
The delay in payment of salary shortfalls experienced between January and May 2017 as well as outstanding shortfalls from 2016. The cloud of poor working conditions and poor remunerations that our members in the state tertiary health institutions have endured despite our appeals to relevant stakeholders and having proffered viable solutions to the quagmire.
“The recent attempts by official of some federal government parastatals to erode the proper placement for resident doctors on their appropriate grade levels and steps which was noted with dismay. The activities of some past and current top officials of the ministry of health who are our life members which are viewed as inimical to the welfare and progress of the association”
The decision, it was learnt, was reached at the end of the national executive council meeting of the National association of resident doctors (NARD) in Calabar, Cross River State.
The aggrieved doctors as also referred the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, to the disciplinary committee of NARD for sanction.
“That in view of the negative actions and stance of the following life members of our association on the aforementioned issues, Adewole, Dr Wapada Balami, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu, are hereby referred to NARD disciplinary committee for adjudication and further action” the statement said.
It added: “In the light of the foregoing, NARD gives the federal government of Nigeria 21 days to address these issues in total, failing which NARD cannot continue to guarantee industrial harmony”