NMA Condemns Sack Of Doctors, Urges FG To Reverse Directive

By IAfrica
In Nigeria
Aug 16th, 2014

The Lagos State Chapter of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), on Saturday urged the Federal Government to reverse its directive and withdraw its circular on the sack of resident doctors in the country.

Dr Tope Ojo, Chairman of the association  made the appeal at a news briefing in Lagos.

It will be recallled that the Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu, on Aug.13, issued a directive terminating the residency training programme for doctors in the country until further notice.

However, Dr Ojo said, the government should  engage the association in dialogue to provide lasting solution to the problems in the health sector rather than opt for sack.

According to him, such action will not yield positive result and will further aggravate the problems in the sector.

”NMA condemns in totality the alleged presidential directive via the Federal Ministry of Health suspending Residency Training Programme in the country.

”It could be recalled that such action was taken in 1985 during Gen. Muhammadu Buhari regime. May 7, 2012, the Lagos State Government also sacked some striking Lagos doctors.

”These actions had not yielded positive results in the past and can never stand the test of time.

”Government should show commitment on her part in resolving the current impasse with the NMA rather than resorting to punitive measures that will only further aggravate the already deplorable situation, ”he said.

Ojo said that the current strike action would  continue and that the immediate reversal of the sack remained the only condition to resume talks with the Federal Government.

He, however, advised the affected doctors against collecting any sack letter or sign any register opened in any hospital. 

Also speaking, Dr Olusegun Akinwotu, President, Association of Resident Doctors, Federal Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Yaba, said that such action would have negative implications on the sector.

Akinwotu said that it would have huge effect on the operations of the hospital as  50 to 70 per cent of the doctors in government hospitals were resident doctors.

”It will affect medical schools as they will remain shut down because these doctors contribute about 50 per cent to the training of medical students.

”All major surgical operations will remain cancelled in all teaching hospitals, because the consultants by default perform all major surgeries with the assistance of their resident doctors.

”It might even escalate the current Ebola scourge because majority of the volunteers involved are resident doctors,” he said.

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