The Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria has called on the Accountant General of the Federation to pay up the April and May salary of its workers.
The salary was withheld because the workers embarked on strike.
Its National President, Biobelemoye Josiah, made this call when the Accountant General of the Federation, Alhaji Ahmed Idris, paid a courtesy visit to the Union’s Secretariat on Wednesday in Abuja.
According to him, the law of `No work No Pay’ has not been used judiciously, following reports of payment of salaries of some doctors who had also embarked on strike in Lagos University Teaching Hospital in November 2018.
He noted that the speedy payment of these monies to its members would enhance justice and equality by which the administration was known for, especially in the fight against corruption.
He said: “I want to use this opportunity to plead with you because of the position of the office you occupy, we know you can help us out.
“Prior to the elections, this union and the Joint Health Sector, were tempted to make the situation very restive during that period, because the Federal Ministry of Health unjustly seized the salaries of our member, under the guise of `No work No pay’.
“And then we ask, if no work no pay is a law, on the other hand, strike itself is also a law, and if no work no pay as a law can be bent for some persons in this federation.
“We are aware that some persons went on strike, and the no work no pay was issued and withdrawn, so why should it be different for our own members, JOHESU members.
“Within the health industry, in November last year, our members, medical doctors in LUTH went on strike just like we did in April and May and they were paid.’’
He added that its members have been able to overcome the temptation of using that issue to becoming restive.
Josiah, who is also the JOHESU President, restated the union’s commitment to support the non-privatisation of public health institutions in the country.
According to him, the challenges of health care delivery in the country was more about corruption, which ought to be addressed immediately.
He said Nigeria cannot continue to tolerate medical tourism, which had become the bane of health sector development.
He threw his weight behind President Muhammadu Buhari’s anti-corruption fight and the non-privatisation of public health institutions.
He added that this was the only way that poor and vulnerable persons would access healthcare.
Idris, while noting the cordial relationship of understanding and mutual respect, commended the past and current leadership of the Union in the development of workers and the health sector.
He said if corruption was arrested at all levels, development would be all encompassing, saying the union’s support of government policy was commendable.
He promised the support of the office of the AGF to address the issues raised by MHWUN, urging them to continue to work in a peaceful atmosphere while fighting for the rights of Nigerian health workers.
He urged the leadership to sustain and trust its members have on them, especially on judicious use of dues and contributions.
The MHWUN was formed with the merger of 17 house unions in the health sector, to provide superior service to Nigerian medical workers, putting safety first, delivering exceptional work, fostering innovation, acting with integrity, and strengthening the communities.