As the national strike embarked upon by the Joint Health Sector Unions (JOHESU) lingers without positive response from the government, the group has directed its counterparts in the states and local governments to join the ongoing health workers strike by Wednesday midnight.
Briefing press men in Abuja on Wednesday on the latest development on the strike, Biobelemoye Joy Josiah, the national chairman of JOHESU, explained the reason for the inclusion of states and local government health workers in the strike, noting that series of meetings with the government to resolve the crisis had not yielded any positive result.
It will be recalled that JOHESU directed all members to embark on a nationwide strike, three weeks ago, and since then activities in most public hospitals have been crippled without health workers to attend to patients.
Consequently, laboratories have been shut down with no technicians and technologists to run them, and there is also no staff to collect patients’ records, too.
It is unfortunate, that patients’ are the ones bearing the brunt, as nurses and midwives — some of the most influential members of JOHESU — have all downed tools in all federal health institutions.
Nonetheless, the leadership of JOHESU has reiterated that no going back on the nationwide strike until the government grants their demands.
According to the statement of the National Vice Chairman of JOHESU, Ogbonna Chimela, which he made on 16 April, prior to the commencement of the strike, he said “All federal government health institutions in Nigeria including federal medical centres, specialists’ hospitals, orthopedic hospitals, psychiatric hospitals among others will be the first to shut down. If the government allows the strike to continue after two weeks, all the states and local government health institutions will now join”.
Thus, the directive of the National Chairman of JOHESU, to all states and local government health workers to join the strike is in tandem which the original plan of the strike, he stated.
Pharmanewsonline had reported some of the issues the group is demanding are:
- The upward adjustment of CONHESS salary scale
- Arrears of skipping of CONHESS 10
- Employement of additional health professionals
- The implementation of court judgements
- Upward review of retirement age from 60-65