BY MAYOWA SAMUEL
The Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors has insisted that it will continue its indefinite strike, amid the suspension of its planned nationwide protest.
NARD President, Innocent Orji, stated this in a live television interview on Wednesday, adding that the Federal Ministry of Health had not reached out to the association.
Recall that NARD had commenced an indefinite strike on July 26 after a two-week ultimatum to the Federal Government for the implementation of all its demands.
The demands of the doctors, among others, include the immediate payment of the 2023 medical residency training fund and the immediate release of the circular on one-for-one replacement.
The association also demanded the payment of skipping arrears and upward review of consolidated medical salary structure in line with full salary restoration to the 2014 value of CONMESS.
Orji said, “Yes we put on hold the protest that was supposed to start this morning (Wednesday) but the strike is continuing. We will review again in 72 hours that is the position of our national executive council.
“We started this strike about two weeks ago after a series of notices and an ultimatum given to the government but it looks as if there was no move on the part of the government to resolve the issue that led to the strike.
“Being concerned about Nigerians, we felt that it would not be good to just remain on strike without making an effort to quickly resolve the issue so that we can come back to work.
“So our members met on Saturday. We still gave another window for the government to meet us and resolve the issue before the protest.”
On the Ministry of Health’s approach to resolve the issues, Orji said, “You see, the Ministry of Health has not spoken to us since we started the strike. Unfortunately, if they said they have done that, then we need evidence.”
“We saw what they were doing, some of the government officials who are supposed to call us and take responsibility, they didn’t call. They were just issuing statements,” he added.