Health workers begin indefinite strike

Health workers begin indefinite strike

The Joint Health Sector Unions (JOHESU) and the Assembly of Health Care Professional Association, AHPA, Thursday, declared an indefinite strike across the country.

Members of the unions had trooped to the street of Abuja yesterday demanding that President Muhammadu Buhari approves and implements the Technical Committee Report on the adjustment of the Consolidated Health Salary Structure (CONHESS).

Now, the workers, in obedience to the unions, plan to  stay away from their duty posts from tomorrow until their demands are addressed by the federal government.

Addressing the media in Abuja, earlier today, the executive members of the unions, led by the National Vice Chairman of JOHESU, Dr Obinna Ogbonna, according to Vanguard report,  said that the action became necessary given the federal government’s failure  to meet its demands.

JOHESU is the umbrella body of health workers’ unions and associations, including the Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria, Nigeria Union of Allied Health Professionals, Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions, and Senior Staff Association of Universities’ Teaching Hospitals Research Institutes and Associated Institutions.

The unions’ demands include:

  • Immediate approval and implementation of the Technical Committee Report on CONHESS adjustment by the federal government;
  • Immediate payment of the omission and shortfall in the COVID-19 hazard/inducement allowances of affected health workers in the federal health institutions;
  • Recognition of health workers in non-core hospital facilities in the payment of new hazard allowances and payment and inculcation of peculiar allowances to health workers under the JOHESU/AHPA;
  • Immediate and unconditional implementation of the Pharmacist Consultant cadre;
  • Unconditional payment of all withheld salaries of the Federal Medical Centre, Owerri, Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH), Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH);
  • April and May,2018 salaries of members at National Obstetric, Fistula Centre (NOFIC), Azare, Bauchi State;
  • Speedy implementation of the increase in retirement age from 60 to 65 years and 70 years for consultants in the health professions.

The leadership of JOHESU had in a letter dated May 9, 2023, issued a 15-day ultimatum to the Federal Government over alleged inconsistencies of the government in the ongoing negotiations to adjust the Consolidated Health Salary Structure for health workers on their platforms.

The strike, according to the unions, follows the expiration of the ultimatum today.

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