The Nigerian Medical Association has issued a 21-day ultimatum to the Federal Government to resolve all lingering industrial actions with the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), Medical and Dental Consultants Association of Nigeria, and other affiliate members.
This ultimatum is part of the resolutions reached during its National Executive Council (NEC) meeting, held in Benin City.
“After due consideration, NEC put the Federal Government on a 21 days’ notice to fully resolve all the issues contained in the various agreements signed with Affiliate members of the Nigerian Medical Association (including MDCAN, MEDSABAMS, and NARD),” the statement jointly signed by its President, Prof Innocent AO Ujah and Secretary, Dr. Philips Uche Ekpe, read.
According to the doctors, if the Federal Government fails to implement the agreements after the expiration of the 21- day notice, the NMA will summon an emergency delegate meeting.
“In the event that the FG fails to implement the agreements after the expiration of the 21 days’ notice, NMA shall summon an emergency delegate meeting to review the progress made on the implementation of the agreements,” the NMA added.
NMA’s ultimatum is the latest in the lingering tussle between the Nigerian government and NARD which has gone on strike since July 31.
Despite a series of meetings between the Federal Government and the striking doctors, no resolution has been reached.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, had in the wake of the disagreements threatened to invoke the “no-work, no pay” rule on NARD.
But the NMA has thrown its weight behind the striking doctors and other health workers.
“The Nigerian Medical Association fully supports all her affiliates in their efforts to improve the healthcare delivery in Nigeria and the welfare of her members,” it assured.
“NEC affirms that no doctor shall be victimized for participating/not participating in the strike action by NARD.”