Piqued by the effects of the lingering strike action by doctors under its employ, the Lagos State Government has sacked over 1,000 doctors currently clamouring for the full implementation of the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure (CONMESS).
LEADERSHIP gathered that each of the doctors has been served a dismissal letter dated Friday, May 4, 2012.
In the letter, the Personnel Management Board (PMB), the disciplinary organ of government which met last month, established against the doctors a case of misconduct - absence from duty without leave or reasonable cause.
To nail the striking doctors, the PMB also established against them, a case of insubordination for failure to respond to lawful query issued to them.
The letter further reads: “The committee therefore recommends your dismissal from service in accordance with the provisions of the Civil Service Rule Nos. 04502, 04507 and 04508. The board has therefore approved your dismissal.
“Therefore you are to convey the possession of the properties of the state government in your custody to the Chief Medical Director (CMD).”
The letter was signed by the CMD of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Professor David Oke.
Responding to the sack notice, Chairman of the Medical Guild, Dr. Olumuyiwa Odusote, described it as a confirmation of the government’s insensitivity and insincerity to resolve the issue on ground.
He said the guild had taken its hands off the matter and had handed the case to the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA).
Odusote, who condemned the state government for its insincerity, said they called the doctors to a meeting on Saturday whereas they had signed their sack letters a day before.
“The meeting held on Saturday at the House of Assembly and they (House members) showed they were partisan on the issue,” he said.
Odusote, however, said the doctors had no regrets for embarking on the strike, adding that the wages of doctors were nothing to write home about.
Reacting to the sack shortly after an emergency congress of the association yesterday in Lagos, the State Chairman of NMA, Dr Temiye Edamisan, described the government’s action as draconian and undemocratic and most obscene by any government.
“They are still behaving as if they are in a military (regime). If they do this to the doctors and they survive, they will do it with the other workers in the health team. They have turned everybody to their slave, because they think they are so big now that people should become their slaves. Go and see the taxi drivers who have become their slave,” he stated.
As at the time of filing this report, LEADERSHIP learnt that the affected doctors were having a meeting at LASUTH with the NMA to determine the next line of action.