More than two weeks after it embarked on nationwide industrial action over unmet demands, the Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) has asked its members to resume work by 8 a.m on Saturday (today).
The association’s President, Emeka Orji, confirmed the development to this newspaper on Saturday morning.
Mr Orji said the doctors will review progress made in two weeks.
“We just suspended the strike. Work to resume 8 a.m. on Saturday,” he said.
“We will review progress in two weeks.”
The members of NARD embarked on an industrial action on 26 July following the failure of the Nigerian government to meet their demands.
The doctors’ demands, among many others, include the immediate payment of the 2023 Medical Residency Training Fund (MRTF), tangible steps on the “upward review” of the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure (CONMESS), and payment of all salary arrears owed its members since 2015.
The doctors also want the immediate massive recruitment of clinical staff in the hospitals and abolishment of the bureaucratic limitations to the immediate replacement of doctors and nurses who leave the system.
They also want the immediate review of hazard allowance by all the state governments as well as private tertiary health institutions where any form of residency training is done.
PREMIUM TIMES reported how the strike disrupted health services in health facilities in some major parts of the country.
The resident doctors comprise the bulk of medical personnel in Nigeria’s tertiary hospitals; hence health activities are mostly crippled when they are on strike
The striking doctors had earlier planned to commence a daily peaceful protest, starting from Wednesday, if the government failed to meet their demands.
The decision followed the directive by the Nigerian government to the management of federal tertiary hospitals to commence the enforcement of the “no work, no pay” policy against the striking doctors.
The doctors however suspended the planned protest after a closed-door meeting with principal officers of the Senate on Tuesday.
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