Health Workers Suspend Strike, Resume on Monday

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-While Resident Doctors threaten to embark on strike

Health workers, under the aegis of the Joint Health Sector Unions (JOHESU) have called off their 44 days strike on Thursday, following the intervention of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria (NICN), to take up the mediation process to a conclusive end.

Meanwhile, the Nigeria Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) has said it cannot guarantee industrial harmony after a scheduled meeting on 2 June, over the expiration of the 21-day ultimatum issued to the Federal Government to resolve lingering issues and also to recall its sacked members by the Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH).

JOHESU Leaders during a recent meeting

NARD Publicity and Social Secretary, Ugochukwu Eze, disclosed this to press men during a news conference in the  Kaduna State branch, on Thursday in Kaduna.

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The leadership of JOHESU announced the suspension of the strike through a communiqué issued at the end of the National Executive Council meeting of the group, held on 31 May, 2018, at the National Secretariat of the Medical and Health Workers Union, Ayuba Wabba House, Abuja.

The document stated that the suspension of the strike was imperative, in order to ameliorate the suffering of the masses, who had not been able to enjoy proper medical attention due to the prolonged strike of the health workers. It was also necessitated following the ex-parte court order obtained by an NGO directing JOHESU to suspend the strike within24 hours.

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Although the JOHESU legal team challenged the ex-parte motion at the National Industrial Court of Nigeria (NICN) and subsequently filed an appeal at the Court of Appeal with a view to quashing the order and taking it away from National Industrial Court of Nigeria (NICN) to the Court of Appeal for adjudication permanently resolving the issue, they decided to call off the strike, while the NICN continues with the process.

The communiqué reads in part:

  1. Court takes over the Negotiations between JOHESU and Government in its Alternative Dispute resolution (ADP) centre.
  2. JOHESU and Government side are to nominate their representatives in the APR process within 24 hours of the NICN judgment. The Federal Ministry of Health and Federal Ministry of Labour shall nominate officers that have authority to negotiate on its behalf to the Honourable Minister of Health and Honourable Minister of labour shall not be part of the committee.
  3. The agreement reached at the ADR centre will be registered in the court as judgment binding on both parties.
  4. JOHESU is to initiate the process of allowing normalcy to return to hospitals within 3 days.
  5. Both parties were ordered to maintain status-quo ante bellum while negotiation lasts.
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