Doctors in Lagos-based federal hospitals to begin strike Friday

Doctors in federal owned health institutions in Lagos state will begin a solidarity strike on Friday in support of their dismissed colleagues, the Association of Resident Doctors have said.

Adetunji Adenekan, the President of Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) chapter of the association, disclosed this on Thursday adding that the “solidarity” strike is to challenge the dismissal of 788 doctors by the Lagos state government.

Dr. Adenekan said that the “draconian action” of the state government is a flagrant disobedience to the rule of law.

The Association of Resident Doctors is an affiliate of the Nigeria Medical Association (NMA).

The state-wide industrial action which is to begin 08:00hours on Friday, 18th of May, 2012, would show that the action and subsequent breakdown of negotiations between the doctors and the Lagos state government were unacceptable and should be stopped, Dr. Adenekan said.

The federal owned hospitals in Lagos state such as LUTH, Idi-Araba; National Orthopaedic Hospital, Igbobi; and the Federal Medical Centre, Ebute-meta; are expected to fully comply with the directive and therefore would not be opened to patients who require medical attention.

Dr. Adenekan stated that the action of the State government was “an insult to the doctors, the profession, as well as the patients.”

“By sacking a total of 788 doctors, the state has succeeded in increasing the patients ratio to 50,000 to a doctor,” said Dr. Adenekan.

“We view this as an injustice, and an injustice to one is an injustice to all,” he said.

He however, added that patients already on admission would be attended to during the strike, but clinics and emergency units would be closed to new patients.

Dr. Adenekan also urged all affected members, including affiliate bodies in Lagos state to remain committed to the course of action.

Recognizing the oath sworn by doctors to save lives, Dr. Adenekan said that the on-going fight is justified as it seeks to rejuvenate the medical profession.

He however, assured that the NMA is working to ensure a speedy resolution to the crisis.

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