Medical Workers Set For Nationwide Strike
health workers on strike (photo credit: The Nation)

The Joint Health Sector Union (JOHESU), are set for another round of a nationwide strike following the expiration of 15-day ultimatum they issued to the Federal Government.

The union has called for an urgent meeting of its National Executive Council (NEC) scheduled for Abuja on Monday; while it has also issued a directive to all its members to await further directives “which shall be communicated from the JOHESU headquarters forthwith.”

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The JOHESU had on January 16, 2019 issued an ultimatum to the Federal Government, to meet some of its demands, which include: Unjustified withholding of the salaries of JOHESU members for the months of April and May, 2018; Upward Adjustment of CONHESS Salary Structure; Headship of Hospital Departments; Implementation of Consultancy Cadre to their members; and Punitive actions against their members in Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Owerri and JUTH.

After reviewing the development on Friday, National Chairman of JOHESU, Biobelemoye Josiah, said JOHESU, in collaboration with the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC), will stage a national protest rally in Abuja “to draw the attention of the Federal and state ministries of health to their unending tyranny directed against Health Workers in all health facilities at Federal, State and local government levels on Monday, February 4, 2019.”

On the crucial meeting scheduled to take a final position, Biobelemoye said: “All Branch Executive representatives in Federal Health Institutions and State Chairmen/Secretaries of all member unions of JOHESU have been specially invited to attend a meeting slated to commence on Monday, February 4, 2019. Towards this end, all invitees are specially mandated to arrive Abuja on Sunday, February 3, 2019 to enable participation in all activities slated for Monday, February 4, 2019.”

He stated further that Zonal and State rallies involving the generality of JOHESU members will continue on Tuesday, February 5, 2019; adding that this must be held in conjunction with all stakeholders as appropriate.

The JOHESU Chairman said: “JOHESU calls on its over one-million members, their spouses and voting age children who together form a block of over two-million and tending to four million voters to collect their PVCs. While we remain a non-partisan organisation, we are resolutely committed to establishing the building blocks of a better Nigeria where there shall be political stability, financial prosperity, economic growth and development as well as value-driven services in all sectors of national life especially the Health sector where we remain very dominant players.

“Towards this end, we call on the Federal Government to immediately facilitate reward for labour especially to our members who have been tortured and afflicted at unprecedented levels in the last three and half years by the coalition of forces the Federal Ministry of Health has continued to epitomize. All JOHESU members are enjoined to await further directives which shall be communicated from JOHESU headquarters forthwith.