By Haruna Gimba
Nigeria’s health sector workers under the auspices of Joint Health Sector Union has commenced a seven-day warning strike, following the expiration of 14-day ultimatum given to the Federal Government to meet its demands.
The union decision was contained in a communique issued after its meeting with the Federal Government. This comes as the government holds the break on its decision to sack the 16, 000 striking resident doctors, Health Reporters can report.
The JOHESU statement is signed by its President, Mr. Biobelemoye Josiah, who is also leader of Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria (MHWUN) and President of National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives (NANNMW), Mr. Abdurafiu Adeniyi.
The statement noted that the union and the Federal Government were unable to reach a compromise at the meeting held on Tuesday in Abuja.
Some of the demands of the union include issuance of the implementation of circular on salary adjustment done for the medical doctors and implementation of all agreements of May 10, 2012, by past administration and issuance of circular for the implementation of specialist allowance for members in line with the 2009 agreement.
“Following repeated ultimatum issued to the Federal Government by JOHESU, a meeting was called on Monday, June 20th, with a view to resolving the issues in dispute. However, the Federal Government was not ready for the meeting and therefore pleaded that meeting be shifted to Tuesday 21st June.
“At the meeting it was observed that despite the series of meetings earlier held with the committees and subcommittees set up to look into the various issues nothing was done by the government. To our outmost
surprise the Federal Government asserted that there was no agreement on the issues upon which the erstwhile Secretary to the Federal Government set up a sub-committee.
“We therefore directed all our members in Federal Tertiary institutions to proceed on a seven-day warning strike. We appeal to the general public to bear with us and impress it on the Federal Government to meet the demands of the unions to prevent the warning strike from becoming a full blown indefinite strike,’’ the statement said.