The Kogi State Chapter of the Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) has refuted the claims from the Kogi State government that its over two month old strike is politically motivated.
Recall that the Kogi State commissioner for Health Dr Saka Audu in a media chat on Tuesday said that the lingering strike action by the state branch of the Nigerian Medical Association was political, adding that the state government would be ready to work with those who were ready to cooperate with it.
He also declared that the it was ready to let go of those who were engaging the state government in a political warfare.
NMA in a statement signed by its chairman Dr Godwin Tijani on Wednesday noted that doctors were asking for improved welfare and not being used by politicians as projected by their employers.
“The crisis started in December 2016. Several strikes were called and later suspended with the hope that the government will do the needful with no tangible success. MOU were signed but not honoured by government.
“The same government that doctors have showed understanding with by calling off strikes despite working without salary for months will now come up to accused us of being used by politician, this is surprising and unacceptable,” he stated.
The chairman maintained that the crisis between striking doctors and the government was still lingering due to irregularities in salary payment for doctors.
He also pointed out that their was gross underpayment of salaries to doctors, with some collecting N35,000per month, which according to him was unacceptable.
Other issues raised by the striking doctors included promotion and annual step increment for several years, failure of the government to implement revised CONMESS, payment of 60% August to December 2017 Salary to doctors while implementing 100% tax deduction from the same salary, retirement of senior doctors yet to attain the statutory age or year of retirement, implementation of No-work-No-Pay policy in the ongoing strike by not paying doctors January 2018 salary and employment of Corps doctors to Secondary and Tertiary Health facilities to replace the striking doctors.
NMA in Kogi State has been on strike since 7th January, 2018.
By: Daramola Adebayo
Daily Post News
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