Governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun state, southwest, Nigeria has taken steps to end the ongoing strike by the leaders of the Joint Health Sector Union (JOHESU) of the Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital (OOUTH), Sagamu.
The governor at the end of a four-hour meeting in Abeokuta, with the officials of the striking health workers, said his government had taken necessary measures to address the six-point demand of the health workers who have been on strike in the last three weeks.
Amosun disclosed that all issues about the strike have been addressed, while the board of the institution would be mandated to urgently forward for approval, names of staff due for promotion.
He urged the workers to avoid going back to the dark days of strike actions.
The governor, who read the resolution reached with the union by the last administration on the alleged 17 months Consolidated Health Salary Scale (CONHES) and 13 months arrears of Consolidated Tertiary Institution Salary Scale (CONTISS), said it had been resolved that payment would only be backdated to February 2011.
Amosun has also agreed to pay the striking workers six months full salary beginning from July 2014.
“I mean well for our people. I don’t have any life again, everything is for my people. I will rather be a statesman than a good politician. What we are doing today is to boost your morale and assure you that we are on the same page in the development of Ogun and health sector.
“You all agree with me that we have not owed you a dime since we came on board. Though, we did not plan for the payment of arrears based on the agreement you had with the last administration, but in the spirit of oneness, we will pay N50m from July for the next six months out of the backlog,” Amosun promised.
The governor then asked the union to call off the strike at its forthcoming congress.
The Union Chairman, OOUTH Chapter, Comrade (Mrs) Kikelomo Enaholo thanked the governor for being magnanimous in his response, promising that, the union would not renege in giving its best for the government.
JOHESU State Chairman, Olakanmi Abiodun, noted that the strike was carried out through a congress but assured that the union in its next congress would allow reason to prevail over sentiments.
He commended the governor for his display of statesmanship and flexibility in decision making.