The National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) has ordered doctors at the COVID-19 isolation centres across the country to join the nationwide strike.
The association has also threatened to impose a five million naira fine on any of its branches that fails to join the strike.
In addition, the association said any of its branches found wanting would not be able to hold any national position for the next two years.
This was disclosed in an internal memo by the association obtained by Punch on Monday.
It read in part, “NARD affirms her commitment to the welfare of all members. All members of NARD will be levied the sum of N2, 500 as strike levy for the smooth prosecution of the industrial action.
“Penalty for any centre that sabotages the industrial action will be payment of a fine of N5m and suspension from holding any NARD national officers committee positions for two years.”
Uyilawa Okhuaihesuyi, National President of NARD, said doctors at the COVID-19 isolation centres, who are their members, were asked to join the strike because of the importance of this particular industrial action.
“I know some people may think we are selfish but this strike is about improving the health sector and improving service delivery,” he said.
He, however, said consultant doctors should be able to handle emergencies at the isolation centres for now.
NARD had on April 1, 2021, began a nationwide strike over the Federal Government’s failure to pay salaries of house officers and review N5,000 hazard allowance of doctors among other demands.
But despite last-minute efforts by the Federal Government to prevent the strike by signing an agreement with the doctors on March 31, the doctors commenced their strike action, saying that the proposals contained in it were not new.
NARD comprises over 40 per cent of the total number of doctors in Nigeria. There are some 42,000 doctors in Nigeria, out of which 16,000 are resident doctors – medical school graduates training as specialists.