National Association of Resident Doctors Threatens To Resume Strike on August 17

The National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) in Nigeria has disclosed that it would continue the suspended strike on the 17th of August, if the Federal Government refuses to provide its demand.

The President of NARD, Doctor Sokomba Aliyu, revealed this in a virtual National Executive Council (NEC) meeting and scientific conference that took place in Gombe state. This was divulged while reading out a communique issued during the press briefing after the meeting.

Earlier on the 15th of July, the Body commenced an indefinite strike, but was interrupted and discontinued on the 21st of June, after it bargained in a meeting with the ministries of Health, Labour, Employment and Productivity, accordingly.

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The association directed all members to commence industrial action because of non-payment of COVID-19 hazard allowance promised, the insignificant supply of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for the medical personnels to battle the Virus, and the reversing the disengagement of all 26 resident doctors at the Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH).

Additional demands by the body include the universal implementation of the Medical Residency Training Act in all Federal and State Hospitals and guaranteeing equal payments of doctors of the same level.

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During the briefing, Doctor Sokomba unfolded that, on reviewing the Federal Government’s response to their demand so far, NARD discovered that the promised COVID-19 hazard allowance has only been paid to Eleven Health Institutions at the Federal level, and most state governments have not yet assessed the hazard allowance of health workers.

He added that the association called on the National Assembly and government to screen the non-enrolment of healthcare personnels for the Group Life Insurance and the non-payment of death-in-service benefit to the next-of-kin of the ex-worker, in spite of several claims of payment to insurance companies.

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Dr Sokomba 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.”