Lagos Doctors Embark on a 3-day Warning Strike over Safety and Welfare Concerns

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Lagos Doctors Embark on a 3-day Warning Strike over Safety and Welfare Concerns
Nwolu Obiajulu

Doctors in Lagos state, Nigeria under the auspices of the Medical Guild in Lagos, will begin a three-day warning strike from today, 13th July, 2020 due to safety and welfare issues.

Chairman of the Guild, Dr Oluwajimi Sodipo disclosed the position of the association at a briefing on Sunday in Lagos. The Guild consists of medical doctors employed by the Lagos State Government.

Sodipo said that the association exempted members working in the state’s COVID-19 isolation centres and the industrial action would commence on Monday, July 13 and end on 16.

He said the Congress of the Guild had approved the extension of the two weeks-notice to the state government on June 27, after the initial 21 days ultimatum to settle the issues elapsed.

Sodipo said that the grace period given to the government by the association was to enable it meet 70 percent of the doctors’ demands to prevent the strike.

The guild leader, however, noted that the council at its meeting on July 11, noticed that some of the demands were not sorted out by the government.

According to Sodipo, wage disparity between the Federal and Lagos State doctors is not being accorded due attention by the Lagos state government.

He said, “The issue of COVID-19 hazard allowances and inducement allowance, Memorandum of Understanding approved by the Federal Government to the doctors has not been approved by the Lagos Government.

“Doctors working in COVID-19 isolation centres are still being owed two months’ salaries which have remained unpaid at the moment.

“They are also being unceremoniously disengaged without recourse to their welfare.”

The chairman stressed that the issues of doctors getting infected and re-infected daily were not getting the required attention from the government.

“Our members are putting themselves on the line daily to provide care, and we need to do everything to protect our colleagues,” Sodipo added

He charged the government to provide adequate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), ensure prompt testing of health workers and provide insurance.

Sodipo added that issues of shortage of doctors in health facilities have yet to be resolved with no visible substantive action taken by the government to resolve it.

“The congress will reconvene after the three-day warning strike to review the progress made and plan for further actions.

“We call on the Lagos State Government to do all within its power to resolve the impasse,” he said.

A former Chairman of the Guild, Dr Babajide Saheed, urged the state government to avert the strike by doing the needful.

Source: Sahara Reporters

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