The Federal government has appealed to the striking members of the Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) to reconsider their planned nationwide protest and halt the ongoing strike, citing the dire situation in hospitals across the country where numerous lives are being lost.
The plea was made by Daju Kachallom, the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, during her address to journalists at the ministry’s headquarters in Abuja.
Simultaneously, the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) urged the Federal Government to urgently resolve the areas of disagreement. Dr. Uche Ojinmah, the President of NMA, emphasized the association’s commitment to safeguarding the interests of NARD members and expressed concern that the avoidable labor dispute had escalated to a critical point.
Daju, who has been mediating on behalf of the government with various unions, implored the members of NARD not to allow more loss of lives due to their absence from hospitals. She beseeched the striking doctors to return to work promptly, highlighting the precarious state of their fellow countrymen who are teetering between life and death. She assured that the government is diligently working to address NARD’s demands within a short timeframe.
The Permanent Secretary clarified that NARD’s primary demands requiring swift attention included the Medical Residency Training Fund (MRTF) and the direct replacement of doctors in hospitals. Dr. Ojinmah urged NARD to extend a gesture of goodwill toward the government for the sake of suffering patients and fellow citizens, imploring a collective effort to swiftly resolve the dispute in the best interest of the nation.
He stated, “Let’s set aside any obstacles, whether perceived or real, to facilitate a rapid resolution of this dispute in the best interests of our nation. A better Nigeria can become a concrete reality if we all do what’s right for our country.”
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