Nurses, Midwives Dump JOHESU, Give Reasons

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The National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives has withdrawn its membership of the Joint Health Sector Union, Saturday PUNCH reports.

NAMMN said its purpose for joining JOHESU had been achieved and there was no need to remain in the union.

Speaking with our correspondent, the General Secretary of NANNM, Thomas Ahmed Shettima, stated, “We came together as unions who have a common interest and we have achieved the interest. It is only good that everybody should go to their house. There is no agitation; unions are just like families. In the end, it is achieving that common goal, we have achieved that goal, then everybody should go to their bodies.

“Now that we are registered individually, it means we have different needs to a large extent, despite the fact that we belong to the health industry. We did not start with JOHESU. Consolidated Health Salary Structure was one of the reasons we came together and we have achieved it. So, now nurses say it is time for us to go back to how we were pre-2008.”

NANNM in a letter titled ‘Withdrawal of membership’ signed by Shettima and addressed to the chairman and secretary of JOHESU, dissociated itself from the union.

The associations also copied the Office of the Government of the Federation, the Federal Ministry of Health, the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, the Office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation, the National Salaries Incomes and Wages Commission, the Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational Associated Institutions, the Nigeria Union of Allied Health Professionals, the Senior Staff Association of Universities’ Teaching Hospitals Research Institutes and Associated Institutions, and the Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria, in the letter dated April 27, 2023.

JOHESU is the umbrella body of health workers’ unions and associations, including the MHWUN, NUAHP, NASU, SSAUTHRIAI, and NANNM. With the letter, however, NANNM is no longer a member of JOHESU.

The letter read in part, “It will be recalled that in 2008 or thereabout, the leadership of five unions in the health sector came together and formed the body now called JOHESU. The purpose of this noble idea was to unite and have a formidable body that would fight their members’ common interests. The immediate demand then was a common salary structure for their members at all levels of the health care system.

“The product of the unity brought about the salary structure known as CONHESS. It was expected that after the objective was achieved, the unions would resume their individual mandate as approved by the Office of the Registrar of Trade Unions. However, this was not done for reasons best known to the unions.

“In the light of the foregoing, NANNM as one of the members of JOHESU wishes to formally write and inform you and all other members that it has withdrawn its membership from JOHESU. Let it be noted that from now henceforth, NANNM is not a member of JOHESU.

“Consequently, you are by this letter asked to remove the logo of NANNM from the letterhead paper of JOHESU and any other relevant documents. To this end, JOHESU has ceased to represent and/or negotiate on behalf of the entire nurses and midwives in Nigeria at all levels of the health care system.”

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