FG and striking health workers meet today

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FG and striking health workers meet today

Federal Government and the health workers on strike are scheduled to convene today for a meeting.

FG and striking health workers meet today. In an exclusive interview with The PUNCH, Dr. Obinna Ogbonna, the National Vice-chairman of the Joint Health Sector Union (JOHESU), revealed that today (Thursday), the Federal Government and the striking union will meet once again in an attempt to reach a solution to the ongoing indefinite strike.

Following a previous meeting that ended without reaching a resolution, the unions and the government engaged in discussions last Thursday. However, they were unable to come to an agreement. Consequently, the union members initiated an indefinite strike action to assert their demands.

The health workers are urgently calling for the FG to approve and implement the Technical Committee report on Consolidated Health Salary Structure Adjustment. They also demand the prompt payment of omitted and inadequate COVID-19 hazard/inducement allowances for affected health workers in federal health institutions. Additionally, they seek the acknowledgment of support from health workers in hospital facilities regarding the new hazard allowance. Lastly, they insist on the payment and inclusion of special allowances for health workers under the umbrella of JOHESU/AHPA.

Dr. Ogbonna, in a conversation with our correspondent, confirmed that the scheduled meeting between JOHESU and the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment will take place today (Thursday) at 12 pm. In the absence of the minister, the permanent secretary of the ministry will preside over the meeting, adhering to the power hierarchy.

Among the additional demands put forth by the union is the immediate and unconditional implementation of the pharmacist consultant cadre, the full payment of withheld salaries at the Federal Medical Centre, Owerri, Jos University Teaching Hospital, and the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, as well as the April and May 2018 salaries owed to members at the Federal Medical Centre, Azare. The union also emphasizes the swift execution of the proposed increase in the retirement age from 60 to 65 years, and for consultants in the health professions, an increase to 70 years.

JOHESU serves as the umbrella organization encompassing various health workers’ unions and associations, including the Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria, the Nigeria Union of Allied Health Professionals, the Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions, the Senior Staff Association of Universities Teaching Hospitals, Research Institutes and Associated Institutions, and the Assembly of Healthcare Professionals.

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