Eleven days after the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC, offices were shut nationwide, workers of the agency under the Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria, MHWUN, weekend vowed not to return to work until all their internal and external demands are met. Also, the MHWUN, NAFDAC Branch, has directed all NAFDAC staff invited for the forthcoming promotion interviews billed for December 4 and 8, 2014 not to honour the invitation unless NAFDAC accedes to their demands.

Briefing journalists, weekend in Lagos, Chairman, MHWUN, Federal Area Council, Lagos, Comrade Stephen Ibe, maintained that the agency must solve the internal and external problems before workers will return to work. The striking NAFDAC workers are demanding implementation of Consolidated Health Salary Structure, CONHESS; payment of productivity allowance known as 13th month salary; payment of promotional arrears of 2012 and 2013; payment of first 28 days to workers employed in 2009; skipping of CONHESS 10 and conversion of Higher National Diploma, HND, holders among others.

Ibe, who condemned the present salary structure (Consolidated Research Institute Salary Structure, CONRISS) used by the agency, explained that NAFDAC was not a research institute and therefore must be returned to CONHESS. He dismissed recent advertisement on promotion by the agency, saying: “NAFDAC only wanted to persuade the workers to suspend their 11-day-old indefinite strike by asking them to come for promotion exercise.” Ibe, who said the union was opened to dialogue, said the Director General of NAFDAC, Dr Paul Orhii, should address the problems in totality than treating them with kid gloves.

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