You may remember that the Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) has engaged in periodic strikes since the government has failed to meet the organization’s requests.
The doctors are demanding, among other things, that they be paid all wage arrears owing to them since 2015, that concrete efforts be taken toward an upward revision of the Consolidated Medical wage Structure (CONMESS), and that the 2023 Medical Residency Training Fund (MRTF) be paid immediately.
The medical community also demands an end to bureaucratic roadblocks and an immediate increase in clinical staff recruitment in hospitals to replace doctors and nurses who frequently leave the profession.
They also demand that all hospitals, public and commercial, that offer residency training conduct an immediate risk assessment.
Wike told Abuja’s medical residents that the federal government (FG) will consider their suggestions if they are made.
Disliking industrial action, the Minister pointed out that he would benefit financially from a physicians’ strike.
Wike stated that he would not compensate striking medical professionals and that he would be willing to take them to court if necessary.
It was his words:
Put up your suggestions, and we’ll figure out which ones we can implement and which we can’t.
If you don’t like it, don’t threaten a strike at me. If you go on strike, I save money and won’t have to pay you back unless we end up in court.
“I don’t believe in theory; what matters to me is the ground truth, not empty promises.”