Nigerian doctors to begin Nationwide strike amid rising COVID-19 cases

Nigeria resident doctors
Emeh Joy

The National Association of Resident Doctors of Nigeria (NARD) is set to commence on a nationwide strike on June 15, 2020, following the inability of the Federal Government to meet its demands.

The National President of NARD, Dr Aliyu Sokomba speaking via an official letter with the reference number, NARD/SG/2019-2020/070620/246 reiterated that the government hadn't met the demands of the association.

"Consequent upon the 14 days ultimatum duly served the Federal Government for indefinite strike action, in accordance with the resolution of the Ordinary General Meeting of the Association on May 29 2020, we hereby notify you that all resident doctors, medical doctors below the rank of Principal Medical Officer (PMO) and House Officers across all the Federal State hospitals in Nigeria, shall be embarking on a total and indefinite strike action effective 12:01 a.m on Monday, June 15 2020.

"It is important that you make alternative arrangements for the care of the patients as the strike shall be total and indefinite. No service of any kind, be it emergency, care at COVID-19 isolation and treatment centres shall be exempted. We sympathize with the patients and Nigeria populace", Sokomba said.

Still speaking further he said, "For the purpose of clarity, the demands on which the ultimatum was predicted include the following: Provision of grossly appropriate Personal Protective Equipment for all healthcare workers, immediately reversal of the illegal disengagement of all 26 resident doctors in Jos University Teaching Hospital, and the payment of all salaries owed them, in keeping with provisions of the Medical Residency Training Act.

"Immediate implementation of the revised hazard allowance and payment of the COVID-19 inducement allowance as agreed with by the Federal Government and healthcare workers three months ago.

"Provision of funding for Medical Residency Training in the 2021 Appropriation bill. Payment of all arrears owed our members in federal and state tertiary health institutions, arising from the consequential adjustment of the National minimum wage.

"Stoppage and immediate refund of all illegal, unjust and callous cut in salaries of our members by Kaduna state and other state governments".

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