Federal government has asked doctors to call off their strike and return to work after it said it had “met its own side” of agreements reached with Nigerian Medical Association.
Health minister Onyebuchi Chukwu said Friday government wanted “members of the NMA to respond and attend to emergency cases in the spirit of this understanding.”
The health ministry is expect to put out three administrative letters, alongside a circular from the National Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission to meet some of NMA’s 24 demands.
Chukwu said government expected NMA to call its delegates on Monday for a meeting to consider calling off its strike completely, calling the strike “unnecessary”.
“Almost all issues in contention were either issues that had been satisfactorily resolved or [could be] treated through administrative mechanism,” said Chukwu.
He said NMA jettisoned a memorandum from a June 25 meeting, a day after doctors issued their ultimatum, and went on its July 1 strike, which was “regrettable.”
At a second meeting the same day, government “could not dissuade NMA” from its strike, but another meeting on July 2 was aborted after the NMA team failed to turn up.
The understanding came from a 10-hour meeting on July 3.
Based on the agreement, the federal health ministry will issue a letter stating clearly that it has not abolished the position of DCMAC (deputy chairman of medical advisory committee) in hospitals, which NMA kicks against, said Chukwu.
Non-medical health workers reject the position of DCMAC, prompting the ministry to put it on hold for hospitals where the position had not been created, pending a court judgement, a stance Chukwu said was “misunderstood” by NMA.

~Daily Trust 


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