By; SANI ALIYU, Zaria
The National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital (ABUTH) chapter has encouraged its members to sustain the 100 per cent compliance of the ongoing nationwide industrial action.
Branch Secretary, Dr Sam Kwis made the plea in an interview with newsmen in Zaria, Kaduna State.
According to him, the call become necessary in view of the lingering demands and inability of government to fulfill some agreements and promises.
“We are appealing to our colleagues all over the federation not to relent in their efforts to fight for their legitimate right.”
The secretary identified some of their demands to include; house officers’ proper placement on entry point, shortfall in salaries and incorporating them on Integrated Personnel Payroll Information System (IPPIS).
Others according to him, are implementation of National Health Act which had been passed by the National Assembly and remittance of counterpart pension fund.
“Some of our demands include entry point for house officers which had been lingering for over three years, several committees have been set, negotiation had been on.
“There had been agreement for house officers to be properly placed on a new entry point, but somehow, government did not keep to their own words by releasing circular to that effect.
“We also have been experiencing shortfalls in our salaries, our salaries have been paid in percentage since 2014.
“Our members are the only people in the health sector that are not getting their complete salaries, other health workers are getting their salaries except resident doctors,” he said.
He added that in some hospitals like ABUTH, there are some that are getting their full salaries but some are not getting.
“Of recent, in August. this year, we have another 17 centres that experienced a shortfall, again, in Jan. 2016 there was a shortfall even in the percentage of salaries.
“In Jan. and Feb. 2017 we also experienced a similar shortfall. We went to the ministry and lodged complain, yet nothing was forthcoming.
“We also have another issue of incorporating the resident doctors on Integrated Personnel Payroll Information System (IPPIS).
“We are government employees, we feel that the IPPIS platform is more transparent for the payment of salaries, we should therefore be captured,” he noted.
On the issue of pension, the secretary said resident doctors were civil servant, working like any other civil servant, hence, they were entitle to pension too.
“After putting eight to ten years depending on the department of residency training but government is not remitting its counterpart funding for pension, it means we are being cheated.
“Again, the National Health Act which had been passed into law, we want government to implement it, so that problems in the health sector in terms of government policies, beurocracy, equipping, financing will be addressed,” he said.
He assured that if implemented it would lead to smooth running of health institutions in the country, as there would be more funds to employ staff, to equip the hospitals to be able to render basic services.
“Because people now have to run to nearby countries like Ghana for radiotherapy because radiotherapy machines in the country are not functional.
“As I am talking the only one machine out of the seven centres across Nigeria that is functional is that of Zaria and it is obsolete compared to the recent machines use in treatment of cancer,” he noted.