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Health Workers' Strike: 2,000 Die in FCT - NMA

Posted by By Lere Ojedokun on 2005/11/08 | Views: 309 |

Health Workers' Strike: 2,000 Die in FCT - NMA


NIGERIA Medical Association (NMA) has said that over 2,000 deaths have been recorded in various government hospitals in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) where doctors and other categories of health workers have been on an indefinite strike.

NIGERIA Medical Association (NMA) has said that over 2,000 deaths have been recorded in various government hospitals in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) where doctors and other categories of health workers have been on an indefinite strike.

It also warned of harder measures if the FCT administration failed to commence implementation of an earlier agreement entered into with the Joint Action Committee (JAC) within one week, beginning from November 4.

The doctors, nurses and allied professionals in the public health sector of the nation's capital had between August 30 and September 6 embarked on strike to press home their demand for payment of arrears of 22 per cent increment in basic salary and arrears of monetisation of fringe benefits as approved in the FCT's recurrent budget for the fiscal year.

The management of Health and Human Services Secretariat and JAC had on September 5 signed an agreement after resolving to start paying the 22 per cent emolument arrears as from September which prompted the strike's call-off initially.

Payment mechanism was that the first tranche covering January to August would be paid in September and the balance by last month.

But alleging default by the FCT administration, the health workers on October 28 resumed the industrial action which has brought frustrations and despair to thousands of residents who have been left to their fate.

Chairman, FCT branch of the association, Dr. Omale Joseph Amedu, at a news briefing weekend, told journalists that over 2,000 patients who could not get medical attention had so far died.

"We noted particularly, the unprecedented consequences of the strike in which close to 2,000 persons have died and more are dying. We feel concerned that this matter has been allowed to degenerate this far, and innocent tax payers are paying the supreme price.

"We had gone round virtually all the hospitals in the FCT. You will know the extent if you go there to see things yourselves probably our figure must have been under estimation," he lamented.

Dr. Amedu said that several efforts, including the intervention of the NMA national leadership, to break the cycle of strike have been consistently rebuffed by the FCT administration."

He alleged that rather than working towards peaceful resolution of the crisis, their employers worsened matter by engaging "desperate young doctors without regard to due process."

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Fay(Katy, Texas, US)says...

Actually translates to bravehearted.