The governing board of Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital (ABUTH), Zaria, has appealed to the striking health workers to call off their nation-wide strike in the interest of the masses. It said the gesture is to reciprocate the Federal Government’s reformation plan which is under way. Rising from its 91st meeting, ABUTH urged the workers to rescind their stand on the on-going strike to appreciate President Goodluck Jonathan’s ordering holistic review of the entire health sector and meeting their demands.
Briefing newsmen in Osogbo, Osun State capital on the outcome of the emergency meeting of the board at the weekend, Chief Shuaib Oyedokun, who is ABUTH Chairman, described the President’s swift response in setting up a committee to look into the grievances of Joint Health Sector Union (JOHESU) as good-natured. He said the gesture deserved the understanding and co-operation of the union in embracing dialogue as well as showing sacrificing spirit in the New Year.
Chief Oyedokun said at a time like this when the world is commending the Jonathan administration’s triumph over Ebola scourge, a prolonged strike in the nation’s health sector could reverse the trend. He urged the striking workers to take advantage of the ongoing collective efforts of the President to ameliorate their situation.
The ABUTH chairman regretted that the strike which began in November last year, has brought untold hardship to Nigerians. He noted that patients in federal hospitals had been discharged prematurely with most of them having no other option than to patronise quack doctors amid consequences of untimely death and permanent disability.
Since government is studying the report submitted by the committee recently set up to review the entire health sector, particularly the grievances of JOHESU, Chief Oyedokun expressed confidence that every step being taken to move the health sector forward would definitely meet the aspirations of JOHESU.
Meanwhile, the Chief Medical Director of ABUTH, Prof. Lawal Khalid, has commended doctors and interns in the Accident and Emergency section as well as those in emergency and paediatrics units of the hospital for offering their services by attending to dire emergencies and providing essential care.