The National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) has threatened to resume its suspended strike by 17 August if the Federal Government fails to meet its demands.
Dr Aliyu Sokomba, NARD President, stated this while reading out a communique issued at a press briefing after its virtual National Executive Council meeting and scientific conference held in Gombe State from 20-25 July.
The doctors had commenced an indefinite nationwide strike on 15 June, but suspended on 21 June after meetings with the ministries of Health, and Labour, Employment and Productivity respectively.
The association had directed its members to embark industrial action due to non-payment of COVID-19 hazard allowances, the poor provision of adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) for all healthcare workers and the reversal of the disengagement of all 26 resident doctors at the Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH).
Other demands are the universal implementation of the Medical Residency Training Act in all Federal and State Hospitals and ensuring pay parity among doctors of equal cadre.
Speaking at the briefing, Sokomba said upon the review of the Federal Government’s commitment to their demands, NARD noticed that COVID-19 inducement allowance has only been paid to eleven federal health institutions and most state governments are yet to review the hazard allowance of health workers.
He added that the union called on government and the National Assembly to probe the non-enrolment of healthcare workers for the Group Life Insurance and non-payment of death-in-service benefit to the next-of-kin of its fallen heroes, despite claims of payment to insurance companies.
He said: “NEC resolved to extend the suspension of our strike action by three weeks to give the government time to address our demands, failure of which will leave us with no choice other than to resume the suspended strike on Monday, August 17 2020.”