The Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) on Sunday extended the ultimatum issued to the Federal Government over the plight of its members, saying this was necessary to give the federal and State governments more time to resolve the matter.
The NARD had earlier issued a two-week ultimatum to the federal and State governments to resolve the issues or they would embark on a strike.
The NARD, at the end of its National Executive Council (NEC) meeting held in Ilorin, Kwara State capital, bemoaned the slow pace in the payment of the 2020 Medical Residency Training Funds (MRTF) for its members who were hitherto omitted.
While reading the communique on their new position, NARD President, Dr Dare Godiya Ishaya, flanked by other members of the executive, also decried the delay in the implementation and payment of the newly upgraded Hazard Allowance since its circularisation by the Federal Government in December 2021.
According to him, the worsening spate of brain drain in the health care system has led to a perpetual shortage of manpower with attendant burnout.
“This deplorable situation has led to the shutdown of Federal Medical Center, Owo on the 19th of August 2022 as a consequence of the immense manpower shortage”, he noted.
Dr Ishaya said it was saddening that despite the two weeks ultimatum, the conditions of its members in state government hospitals of Abia, Ekiti, Imo and Ondo have remained unchanged, where members are owed 24, 13, 10, and 5 months salary arrears respectively.
While calling on all well-meaning Nigerians to intervene in their “terrible and deplorable conditions” in the affected hospitals, the NARD president said they have resolved to further extend the ultimatum by another two weeks.
“This is after observing the Federal Government’s effort and as a show of goodwill to give adequate time to substantiate their efforts with results to avert industrial disharmony”, he said.