Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) has distanced itself from the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) drafted by the Federal Government and vehemently refused to sign the document as a commitment to ending its ongoing industrial action.
The association described the MoU as a veiled punishment for doctors, who are to bear the brunt of government’s failures.
NMA’s intervention was to end the resumed strike of the residents doctors which enters its twenty second day on Sunday.
Recall that resident doctors on August 1 commenced a strike over alleged failure of the Federal Government to implement an agreement bordering on salaries and allowances.
NARD President, Uyilawa Okhuaihesuyi,who declined his assent owing to an undisclosed clause insisted the leadership has to get the nod of members before he could sign the document.
The Minister of Labour and Employment said at the end of the six-hour long meeting that all other unions in the negotiation including the NMA and the Medical and Dental Consultants of Nigeria signed the new agreement.
Chris Ngige disclosed that the meeting did not discuss the issue of ‘No Work No Pay’ but that all parties at the meeting agreed to an out of court settlement.
“The meeting agreed we need to let this matter go. Therefore, the budget office of the federation should start from the 2021 service vote to start paying. And if we have any leftovers, we roll it into 2022.
“Coming to hazard allowance, everybody agreed the discussion is still ongoing and therefore the government wants to finish it up.
We agreed with the NMA position that they don’t want to discuss holistically anymore as an association and that they have their own peculiarities that are not the same with other health workers.
“We are going to do two meetings, one for NMA and affiliates and one for JOHESU. But we are taking the meetings concurrently so that we don’t run into troubled waters. We are starting next week,” Ngige said.
Ngige disclosed the NMA has been directed to submit a written position on the controversial withdrawing of doctors under the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) and house officers from the scheme of service to point out the anomaly in the circular.