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NMA Urges Buhari To Prevail On Aregbesola Over Doctors’ Claims

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CONCERNED about the plight of its members in Osun State, the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari and leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to prevail on Governor Rauf Aregbesola to pay doctors “their rightful and legitimate claims- full salary for six months, skipping and relativity in accordance with established principles of universal applicability.”

The NMA, in a statement signed by its Secretary General, Dr. Adewunmi Alayaki, said this is the only way to achieve sustainable development goals and universal health coverage in the state.

But Aregbesola described their call as misplaced.

The governor, in a statement by the Director, Bureau of Communications and Strategy, Office of the Governor, Mr. Semiu Okanlawon, said the NMA’s appeal should rather go to its members in Osun, “who have abandoned their duty posts for about 11 months now.”

According to Alayaki noted: “The Secretariat of the NMA in Abuja has been inundated with reports of infant and maternal morbidity and mortality occurring daily as a result of the complete collapse of healthcare in certain sections of Osun State.

“This is consequential upon the withdrawal of services by doctors, who have not been paid full salaries for six months.

“Health is seen as one of the cardinal points used by political parties to canvass for votes during campaigns; hence it should not be neglected by any government.”

The NMA said the health workers should be remunerated and motivated adequately and promptly, because they deal with lives, as the attendant effect of not doing so by any government could be disastrous.

The doctors’ association said the state government used the first case to canvass votes for itself, but has failed in the second, which has resulted in not keeping the promise made to the good people of the state during the campaign period.

However, the government said the striking doctors initially created the problem themselves by going against the accepted modulated salary regulation applying to over 40, 000 workforce of the state; hence it is normal that they should also be the ones to extricate themselves from the logjam.

The governor disclosed that his administration had exhausted all avenues to solve the problems through dialogues and negotiations, adding that all moves to resolve the problem amicably were turned down by the doctors, who incidentally were being paid their monthly salaries without working up until September last year.


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