From Okey Sampson, Umuahia
The strike by the Abia State chapter of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), over non-payment of arrears of salary has entered its 3rd week with the leadership vowing to sanction any of its members who violated the national body’s directive on the Tuesday strike in the state.
This was disclosed by the public relations officer (PRO) of NMA in the state, Dr. Christian Irondu during a monitoring exercise in Aba.
Irondu stated that this week was the third of carrying out the strike in obedience to the directives of the national body of the association.
He said during the monitoring exercise, names of members who defaulted would be sent to the state chairman of NMA for onward transmission to the disciplinary committee for appropriate disciplinary action.
The NMA PRO said the strike was as a result of 23 months’ arrears of salaries owed to doctors at the Abia State University Teaching Hospital (ABSUTH), Aba and 13 months’ salary arrears owed to medical doctors at the Health Management Board (HMB). Dr. Irondu said the Tuesday strike, which included doctors in private practice, would last for one month, after which if the state government fails to clear the arrears of salary the doctors, the national body of the association would direct on further action to be taken it deemed necessary.
Chairman of NMA, Aba zone, Dr. Abali Isaiah said non-payment of the doctors’ salary was one of the reasons ABSUTH lost its accreditation.
“We lost accreditation in both medical post graduate colleges – West Africa and National, O and G, internal medicine, surgery and pediatrics.
“The Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria accreditation has expired and we are expected to invite them for re-accreditation and if we lose this one, we are gone,” he stated.