Resident doctors at the Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital, Ado Ekiti, have embarked on an indefinite strike.
The development, according to the President of the association Dr Olaniyi Olaoye, was due to the irregularities in the payment of their salaries attributed to alleged reduction in the monthly subvention to the hospital by government.
Dr Olaoye explained that since 2018, resident doctors have been subjected to hardship due to the payment of only their net salary as against the gross.
He said the non remittance of various deductions such as cooperative and union dues to appropriate quarters had hindered them from having access to loan and necessary benefits.
Dr Olaoye said while the doctors were still trying to endure the pain of amputated salary, the monthly subvention to the hospital was cut again perhaps due to economic situation which made the management unable to pay May and June 2021 Salaries.
The president affirmed that the association after three congresses took the decision to allow their members stay at home pending the time they would have resources to transport themselves to work.
Reacting to the development, the state government expressed concern, but appreciated the understanding of all workers, especially the health workers.
A statement jointly signed by the Commissioner for Health & Human Services, Dr. Oyebanji Filani and Commissioner for Information and Values Orientation, Akin Omole said that considering the state was still knee-deep in fighting the COVID 19 pandemic, “all medical and health practitioners are advised to remain calm and dedicated to duty, while efforts are being put in place to amicably resolve this issue as quickly as possible.
“The management of EKSUTH is hereby directed to ensure there is hitch-free service delivery while the Government continues to work closely with the Association of Resident Doctors and other relevant stakeholders to resolve this issue.
“Strike actions can be counterproductive, especially in the health sector. We therefore appeal to the striking workers to reconsider their position, and continue to engage the government on how best to resolve this industrial dispute.
“The Government of Ekiti State wishes to state clearly that the welfare of the health and medical workers in the state is a major priority of the Dr. Kayode Fayemi led Administration.
“To further assure the good people of Ekiti State of better healthcare service delivery, we have embarked on massive renovation of both primary and secondary health facilities across the state, adequately equipping them with modern medical equipment and supplies which also provide conducive working environment for our health workers.
“We remain committed to protecting the health of all indigenes and residents of Ekiti State while ensuring that workers are duly remunerated for their selfless service,” they said.