Health workers in Nigeria have given the Federal Government a 21-day ultimatum to meet their demands even as they threatened to embark on industrial action at its expiration on March 1, 2018.
The health workers under the aegis of Joint Health Sector Unions (JOHESU) and Assembly of Healthcare Professional Associations (AHP) had on September 29, 2017 suspended a 10-day old strike after a meeting with Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige.
The health workers including pharmacists, nurses, medical laboratory scientists in a communiqué issued at the end of three-day consultative meeting, which ended Thursday, 8 February, 2018, in Abuja, lamented the delay tactics and deliberate foot-dragging of the Federal Government in approving the adjustment of Consolidated Health Salary Scale (CONHESS) as was done for medical doctors’ Consolidated Medical Salary Scale (CONMESS) since January 2014 and also replicated with yet another approval for the same CONMESS in September, 2017 for the medical doctors.
The communiqué was jointly signed by the National Chairman, JOHESU, Biobelemoye Joy Josiah, and the National Secretary, JOHESU, Ekpebor Florence.
JOHESU/AHPA said they have communicated its discontentment on this development to the appropriate quarters of government.
The health workers also urged the House of Representatives members to facilitate enhanced access to healthcare in the country, boost strategies to institutionalise public health reforms to counter the menace of clinical disease state like Lassa fever, Ebola and monkey-pox in the country, as well as a passionate plea to intervene in the unending cycle of discriminatory output of the Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH) in dispensing privileges and resources to the various cadres of health workers in Nigeria.
JOHESU/AHPA called on the FG to urgently revisit the constitution of the membership of the boards of all the Federal Health Institutions (FHIs) as the list of members published in December 2017 seriously violates the Teaching Hospital Act, which provides that a representative of health providers must be appointed on all the boards.