The National Association of Resident Doctors in Nigeria has suspended its strike after 10 days.
Resident doctors had embarked on a total and indefinite strike on April 1, 2021, following the failure of the Federal Government to accede to its demands.
The strike was the outcome of its Extraordinary National Executive Council meeting held on Saturday March 27, 2021 at the Trauma Centre of National Hospital Abuja to review its earlier ultimatum and deliberate on burning issues affecting residency training, healthcare delivery and the welfare.
The communiqué of the NEC attended by over 50 chapters of NARD was signed by Okhuaihesuyi; its Secretary General, Dr. Jerry Isogun; and Publicity/Social Secretary, Dr. Dotun Osikoya.
Among other issues, NARD demanded the immediate payment of all salaries owed to all house officers, including March salaries (regardless of quota system), before the end of business on March 31, 2021.
But 10 days after the commencement of the strike which paralysed activities in all public hospitals, the association suspended the industrial action on Saturday night.
NARD President, Dr Uyilawa Okhuaihesuyi, said the suspension is a proof that it is a responsible group as the government had acceded to some demands tabled before it.
According to him, the strike was suspended after hours of meetings with various stakeholders in the health sector.
Okhuaihesuyi said, “We suspended the strike about one hour ago. We are responsible to Nigerians, the government has acceded to some demands. We are patriotic Nigerians and we took certain factors into consideration.”
He, however, noted that the strke was suspended for four weeks to give the government the benefit of the doubt.
Giving some insights into the agreements with the Federal Government which prompted the suspension of the 10-day strike, Okhuaihesuyi said, among other issues, it was resolved that those still owed the 2020 MRTF-Medical Residency Training Fund would be paid from the supplementary 2021 budget.
He added that the meeting also resolved that all NARD members on the Government Integrated Financial Management Information System would be migrated to the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System and paid their owed salaries in earnest.
Okhuaihesuyi said, “We suspended the strike for four weeks. All house officers yet to be paid will be paid by Monday. All our members on GIFMIS would be migrated to IPPIS and paid their owed salaries in earnest.
“Those still owed 2020 MRTF will be paid from the supplementary 2021 budget. The 2021 MRTF has been sorted. Increment in hazard allowance (is) being worked on.”
He said that details of the meeting with the government and the consensus reached by both parties will be contained in a communiqué the association will release today (Sunday).