Resident Doctors Begin Nationwide Strike Monday

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By Adebayo Waheed, Ibadan

The National Association of Resident Doctors (NARDs) has threatened to embark on an indefinite nationwide strike, beginning from Monday, to protest non-payment of their salaries.

The president of NARDs, Dr Olusegun Olaopa of University College Hospital (UCH) Ibadan, who disclosed this in a statement he issued yesterday, said the resident doctors have decided to commence an indefinite industrial action on Monday to press home their demands.

According to him, the action is sequel to a statement signed by John Onyebueze and Aneke Emmanuel, national president and secretary of NARDs, respectively.

The statement said that it was resolved at the NEC meeting of NARDs held in Abuja on August 26 to embark on the strike.

It noted: “Neither the Federal nor State governments has shown commitment to the resolution of issues at stake nor honoured previous agreements. Consequent upon this, the association resolved to proceed on a total indefinite industrial action from Monday, September 4, 2017, until all these issues are permanently resolved.

“Nationwide pre-strike protests against this injustice are to hold in all our branches and states of the federation on August 30, 2017. All heads of tertiary health institutions who have received funding for payments to our members should be directed to pay same immediately.”

NARDs members are demanding for the resolution of persistent shortfalls and unpaid arrears of salaries earned in both federal and state tertiary health institutions.

Other issues are the enrolment of resident doctors into the Integrated Personnel Payroll Information System (IPPIS) since 2003 and non-implementation of adjusted House Officers’ Entry grade level equivalent since 2014.

The resident doctors are also asking for the resolution of issues around their stagnation of promotion and non-promotion of members who have met requisite criteria despite all collective bargaining agreements and circulars.

Resident doctors in UCH had on January 6, 2017 embarked on a one-day protest rally over non-payment of their November and December 2016 salaries.