Daily Sun is reporting that the emergency national executive council of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has resolved to suspend its earlier directive to all medical and dental practitioners in Nigeria to withdraw their services from today to allow for full implementation of all the elements of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) within the government set timelines.
Accordingly, all medical and dental practitioners nationwide have been directed to continue to render their normal services.
NMA President, Dr. Osahon Enabulele, said the Nigerian Medical Association would on February 7 reappraise the commitment of the Federal Government to its self-determined time lines for the full implementation of the MoU signed with the association, and take appropriate actions as it might deem fit.
He stated that the association appreciated the efforts and commitment of President Goodluck Jonathan to transparently address the demands of the NMA.
“In particular, the Association greatly applauds Mr President on his firm decision to appoint a Surgeon General of the Federation whose roles will undoubtedly help to address some of the problems confronting the country and the negative impact of medical tourism on Nigeria, among other responsibilities.”
At the expiration of its 4th extended 21-day ultimatum to the Federal Government, the NMA, after an Emergency Delegates Meeting (EDM), held in Minna, Niger State capital on Saturday, December 14, 2013, had directed all medical and dental practitioners to embark on a five-day warning strike from Wednesday, December 18 to Sunday, December 22, 2013, with a further declaration to proceed on a total strike from today, if its demands were not addressed.
The demands are the absence of a regulatory environment for practice in the healthcare sector, funding of healthcare in Nigeria and expansion of Universal Health Coverage to cover all Nigerians, health infrastructural upgrade, fundamental injustices done to doctors in terms of workplace conditions/conditions of service, and other health sector challenges.
Hopeful of the implementation of the MoU, signed with the Federal Government, the NMA expressed its appreciation of the understanding and support shown “by Nigerians and our friends in the fourth estate of the realm in the current struggle of the Nigerian Medical Association.
“The association also wishes to place on record its appreciation of the intervention of the Governor of Delta State, Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan.
“We also appreciate the intervention of members of the executive and legislative arms of government, particularly the Senate President, David Mark, Speaker, House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwal, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Anyim Pius Anyim, Minister of Labour and Productivity, Emeka Wogu, Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu, Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Bukar Goni Aji, Chairman, Senate Committee on Health, Ifeanyi Okowa, Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Health, Ndudi Elumelu, Chairman of Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission, Richard Egbule, Director General of the Budget Office, and all other dedicated officers of government.