The Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors has reiterated its stance on its demands from the Federal Government and restated its threat to go on strike if the demands are not met.
The doctors are demanding an immediate increase in the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure to the tune of 200 per cent of the current gross salaries of doctors.
The doctors also want the immediate withdrawal of the bill seeking to compel medical and dental graduates to render five-year compulsory services in Nigeria before being granted full licence to practise.
They also want the immediate implementation of CONMESS, domestication of the Medical Residency Training Act, and review of hazard allowance by all the state governments, as well as private tertiary health institutions where any form of residency training is done; among other demands.
Speaking with our correspondent on Wednesday, the President of NARD, Dr Emeka Orji, said there had been no counter-offer made by the government to the doctors’ demands.
Orji said, “The ultimatum is running, and as of today, there is no counter-offer, and we are hoping that the government will step in before the end of this week.
“This fight is for Nigerians, and that is why we are not looking back. We have talked a lot since last year, but unfortunately, it is making us believe that the Nigerian government will not listen until you get to the level of escalations that will end up in disharmony, and that is where we are now.
“All we hear are threats on national television, and each time they issue these threats on TV, it angers our members the more because if you are meant to be negotiating on how to resolve the issues and you are going on TV to issue threats, it means the government is not willing to find a solution to this. The threats may lead this country to another round of nationwide industrial crisis in the health sector.”
The NARD President noted that a notice of an extraordinary executive meeting of the association would be issued to its members at least three days before the end of the ultimatum.
“The meeting will focus on updating the members of our demands, if the government has responded and if their response is inadequate, then we cannot guarantee industrial harmony, but all options are on the table. If during that briefing, our members feel that nothing has been achieved, anything can happen,” he added.