The Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the University College Hospital (UCH), Professor Jesse Otegbayo has accused the resident doctors of the hospital of playing politics with their strike action.
The CMD shared this information with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) yesterday and stated that despite several pleas from management and other stakeholders, the resident doctors have refused to call off their strike.
The Association of Resident Doctors (ARD) started their strike on May 1 due to some of their members not receiving their salary for four months as well as the non-enrolment of members of their union into IPPIS which was affecting payment of their benefits.
Professor Otegbayo stated that these problems are a national issue as many doctors nationwide also have the same issue.
He said: “The reason why the resident doctors are on strike is because of their salaries, and of course the issue is a national one; we have called them to let them realize this; UCH doesn’t pay salary.”
“But UCH being the number one teaching hospital is also a hotbed for political activities. I have been a president of the ARD before and we used the same tactics to get the attention of the government.”
“What the resident doctors are doing is just to use UCH, because of its brand, nature, and position in the comity of teaching hospitals, as a weapon to attract government’s attention,” he said.”
The CMD also said that the Federal Government was working to address the demands of the striking doctors as soon as possible.
“The Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Minister of Health, Minister of Finance, the National Association of Resident Doctors, the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria and all other stakeholders that are involved have met and have taken a decision to ensure that they (resident doctors) get their demands.”
“Part of the salaries being owed has been paid, but they are waiting for more and I believe the government is doing a lot to make sure that their demands are met and they return to work immediately,’’.