Health Work­ers Re­lax Strike in La­gos, Kano, Yobe

Call for sack of health min­is­ter, walk out of ne­go­ti­a­tions

THISDAY - - NEWS - Paul Obi in Abuja

The Joint Health Sec­tor Union (JOHESU) yes­ter­day called on health work­ers in La­gos, Kano and Yobe States to re­lax the on­go­ing in­def­i­nite strike in their do­main fol­low­ing the co­op­er­a­tion of the gov­er­nors from the above states.

The move to re­lax the strike in La­gos, Kano and Yobe States was as a fall­out of the pos­i­tive re­sponses from the state gov­ern­ments in ad­dress­ing sev­eral de­mands made by JOHESU.

Speak­ing with jour­nal­ists last night, JOHESU Chair­man, Bio­bele­moye Josiah, ex­plained: “It is para­mount we seize this dis­course to spe­cially con­vey deep ap­pre­ci­a­tion to state gov­ern­ments which have gone ahead to meet the var­i­ous clam­ours and terms of set­tle­ment in agree­ments with gov­ern­ment. This in­clude Yobe and La­gos State which have now ad­justed the CONHESS scale as de­manded.

“We spe­cially com­mend the La­gos State Gov­ern­ment for ap­prov­ing the con­sul­tancy cadre for phar­ma­cists in its em­ploy­ment. Just like the Niger State Gov­ern­ment did with phar­ma­cists since 2012.

“The JOHESU also ex­presses grat­i­tude to the Kano State Gov­ern­ment for en­sur­ing good wel­fare pack­age for its health­care work­force in ad­di­tion to the in­ter­ven­tion of Gov­er­nor Ab­dul­lahi Gan­duje to ame­lio­rate the on-go­ing strike. We urge our mem­bers in La­gos, Yobe and Kano State to tac­ti­cally re­lax the strike to ac­com­mo­date emer­gency ser­vices in those states as a mea­sure of good­will.

“JOHESU wishes to de­clare once again that the crux of our clam­our has al­ways been restora­tion of the rel­a­tiv­ity in the CONHESS and CONMESS scale which was de­lib­er­ately dis­torted with ac­tive gov­ern­ment col­lab­o­ra­tion in 2014. We re­main stead­fast that in align­ment with demo­cratic norms and the rule of law, this de­sire re­mains very le­git­i­mate.”

They also took a swipe at the Min­is­ter of Health, Prof. Isaac Ade­wole, de­mand­ing that the fed­eral gov­ern­ment ter­mi­nate his ap­point­ment as a min­is­ter.

They stated that “the Fed­eral Min­istry of Health as presently led by Prof. Isaac Ade­wole has con­sti­tuted it­self as a ma­jor hin­drance to fruit­ful de­lib­er­a­tion as he has never dis­guised his in­ten­tion to sym­bol­ise the pro­pa­ganda ma­chine of the NMA through his pos­tur­ing at all our meet­ings, which ne­ces­si­tated JOHESU to take a po­si­tion that the ne­go­ti­a­tions were struc­tured to fail ab-ini­tio.

“Prof. Ade­wole is on record to have in­sisted that the wage struc­ture in the health sec­tor must reckon with what was ob­tain­able in the 1991 late Prof. Olukoye Ran­some – Kuti’s dual salary sys­tem (MSS and HSS) which marked the be­gin­ning of per­sis­tent ac­ri­mony until it was cor­rected through the Har­monised Ter­tiary.

“The duo of the Min­is­ters of Labour and Health who are both mem­bers of the NMA have taken a po­si­tion that par­ity must en­tail a ba­sic salary dif­fer­en­tial in the emol­u­ment of health pro­fes­sion­als and their doc­tor col­leagues.

“On May 15, 2018, JOHESU came up with a com­pre­hen­sive pre­sen­ta­tion to graph­i­cally show­case the re­al­i­ties of the var­i­ous salary scales in the health sec­tor from 1977 till date.

“Even when the re­al­ity on ground shows that a fresh doc­tor presently en­ters the pub­lic ser­vice on CONMESS 3 which is the equiv­a­lent of GL 12 with a take home monthly pack­age ofN313,000,00 per month, the clos­est in line who are health pro­fes­sion­als en­ter pub­lic ser­vice on CONHESS 9 which is the equiv­a­lent of GL 10 with a pack­age of N161,670.00 with a pro­posal to have an ad­just­ment that takes him to a to­tal emol­u­ment ofN190,000.00, the two min­is­ters who are mem­bers of NMA have taken po­si­tions that these health pro­fes­sion­als seek par­ity with doc­tors. In math­e­mat­i­cal terms this is a sig­nif­i­cant 61 per cent dif­fer­en­tial.”

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