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Poor Remuneration: Kwara Doctors Threaten To Withdraw Services

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The Nigeria Association of Government Medical and Dental Practitioners (NAGMDP), Kwara State chapter, on Tuesday threatened to withdraw their services across the state over poor remuneration.

Their threat is contained in a letter addressed to Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq of Kwara and other stakeholders.

It was jointly signed by the chairman and secretary of the association, Dr. Saka Agboola, and Dr. Ayinde Musa, and made available to newsmen in Ilorin.

According to the medical practitioners, the threat to withdraw their services is also due to poor condition of service.

The association said the poor working conditions had “resulted to a major cause of mass resignation and brain drain which we are currently experiencing among doctors and other health care workers in the state.”

“With reference to the letter sent to your Excellency dated June 16, 2021, titled ‘Letter of request’ and subsequent reminders dated July 13 and July 27, 2021, respectively, drawing your attention.

“On Friday, August 27, 2021, an emergency general meeting of NAGMDP, Kwara State chapter was held,’’ it said.

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The letter said the sole agenda of the meeting was to brief the general house on the effort and doggedness of the state executive council to bring to the governor’s attention the need to better reposition the condition of service of our members and other relevant health care workers.

It added that this was necessary in order to prevent the imminent collapse of the health care system in our state.

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The association insisted that the state government must recruit more medical officers in addition to the constant replacement of those that was resigning on daily basis.

“There should be provision for adequate security in all of our hospitals to avoid breaking down of law and order by patients and their relatives.

“The state government should provide patients relatives building in hospitals, where relatives can be in comfort, while health workers take care of their relatives on admission,’’ it said.

The association also urged payment of COVID-19 allowances to members and other health care workers, as well as provision of a vehicle and housing loan facility at single digit interest rate to all members as a way of motivation and retention in service.

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“There must be the provision of adequate basic medical equipment in all our hospitals.

“Domestication of residency training Act in the state to afford our members who are interested in the pursuit of their postgraduate medical education, among other demands.

According to the association, if our demands are not met by Sept. 13, 2021, we shall have no alternative than to withdraw the service of our members across all the hospitals in the State.

“We hope the government and its relevant ministry will do the needful by avoiding unnecessary disruption of health care services across the state, part of the letter read.

Reacting to the development, Mr. Oladimeji Sa’ad-Aluko, the Director-General of Kwara State Hospital Management Bureau said that the governor was looking at their demands.

According to him, the issue of salary increase is not peculiar to Kwara alone but to the whole country, and that the Federal Government also is unable to solve the issues they have with the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD).

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“The government is taking decisive effort to make sure that we are able to meet those demands before the deadline given to the government.

“The government is ensuring that no stone is left unturned, so we are doing everything we need to do to make sure that they will not come back and ask for another increase,” he said.

Sa’ad-Aluko said that the government had approved the recruitment of more hospital staff, adding that the approval had been sent to the Civil Service Commission to carry out the proper employment procedure. 

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