Nigerians doctors under the umbrella of the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) have announced plans to begin a five-day warning strike if the Nigerian government fails to meet their demands.
The President of the association, Emeka Innocent, said the decision was reached at the NARD’s extraordinary National Executive Council (NEC) meeting held virtually on Monday.
Mr Innocent said the warning strike will commence at 8 a.m on Wednesday 17 May and end at 8 a.m Monday, 22 May.
NARD had on 29 April issued a two-week ultimatum to the government to meet its demands or face industrial action.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, however described as “absurd” the demands by the doctors.
Mr Ngige said the resident doctors are suffering from “entitlement syndrome”, insisting that the federal government has gone to great lengths “to give them everything they want.”
“We have been managing their matter and have given them everything they want, including the residency training programme funds, we are paying them, even when in training, we pay them a full salary, pay them all the allowances and you decided that we have not done enough,” he said.
The doctors, amongst other issues, are demanding the immediate payment of the 2023 Medical Residency Training Fund (MRTF), tangible steps on the “upward review” of the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure (CONMESS) and payment of all salary arrears owed its members from 2015.