Doctors strike: FG breaches salary payment agreement

The Federal Government on Friday breached an agreement it reached with the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), dashing hopes that the strike would soon be suspended.

The government had promised to pay backlog of salary arrears on Friday but did not fulfil its promise which was made on Wednesday.

Arikawe Adeolu, a member of the national executive council of NARD, confirmed that the promise was not fulfilled.

Adeolu, who is also the general secretary of NARD at the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Jabi, Abuja, said as of the close of work on Friday, no member of the association had been paid.

Adeolu said the association would meet later on Friday to decide on next line of action, since the government has refused to fulfil its promise.

“Since we held the meeting with the two ministers, nothing new has happened. We were hoping that they will fulfil their end of the agreement so that we can call off the strike and continue negotiations,” he said.

“But, up till now that I am speaking with you, nothing has happened; we are yet to be paid.

“After the meeting we had on Wednesday, an agreement was reached. Some of the agreements reached cannot be fulfilled immediately except one.

“That is for the federal government to pay the backlog of salary arrears owed doctors across the country; it was agreed that these arrears would be paid latest on Thursday or Friday.

“With this in mind, we scheduled to hold a meeting on Friday to discuss the next steps to take in order to call off the strike but to our dismay, we are yet to receive anything.”

The doctors are protesting the sack of some of their colleagues, non-payment of “skipping’’ entitlement, non-inclusion in the IPPIS platform and non-payment of their salary arrears.

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