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Reps, striking resident doctors continue dialogue despite purported sack by FG

By News Express on 22/06/2016

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The House of Representatives on Tuesday continued its dialogue with the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) despite the Federal Government announcement earlier in the day that the striking doctors had been sacked. The lawmakers after yesterday’s negotiating session expressed optimism that the industrial action would be called off in the next few days.

The lawmakers expressed their confidence after a five-hour meeting convened by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Yakubu Dogara, with a Federal Government delegation and leaders of NARD.

The Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole, thereafter told reporters that the doctors had agreed to sheathe their swords in the interest of Nigerians.

The President of the NARD, Muhammed Askira, however, said the strike had not been put off yet.

The Federal Government had earlier in the day asked heads of Government Tertiary Health Institutions to replace doctors that have abandoned their duties in protest of what poor welfare conditions.

The directive by Prof. Adewole was contained in a circular by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health, Dr. Amina Shamaki, sent to the Chief Medical Directors and Medical Directors of the Federal Tertiary Health Institutions.

In the statement, the minister directed the Chief Medical Directors and Medical Director to ensure immediate compliance.

The circular reads: “It has come to the notice of the Management of the Ministry that some Resident Doctors in your establishment have voluntarily withdrawn from the Residency Training Program by refusing to report for training without authorisation.

“Public Service Rule, PSR 030402 (e) is relevant. This is in spite of the ongoing negotiations on their demands put forward by the representatives of the National Association of Resident Doctors under the auspices of the Nigerian Medical Association.

“In view of this development, you are hereby directed to replace all the Doctors that have withdrawn their services, with others from the pool of applicants for the training programs in the various disciplines in order not to create ominous gap in training with attendant disruption of health care delivery in your facility.”

According to the circular, the ministry is working with the panel on the review of the Residency Training Programme in Nigeria, led by Professor Wole Atoyebi, the Registrar of the National Postgraduate Medical College, to fast-track the development of a comprehensive blueprint for postgraduate training of doctors in the country.

Activities at most tertiary health institutions have been paralysed as a result of the strike embarked declared by NARD on Monday to press home the association’s demands for improved welfare.

•Based on Channels TV reports. Photo shows protesting doctors.

Source News Express

Posted 22/06/2016 05:25:48 AM


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