The Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria, Borno chapter, has appealed to government to speedily pay the death benefits of 260 health workers killed in the state by Boko Haram in the last four years.
The MHWUN state Chairman, Yusuf Inuwa, made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Thursday in Maiduguri.
Inuwa said: “Payment of the benefit would assist families of the affected health workers who were currently experiencing serious hardship.”
He added that dozens of the union’s members were killed across the 27 local government areas of the state, while others were kidnapped and forcefully taken to Sambisa to provide services to Boko Haram.
He said: “In spite of sacrifices of health workers in some of the worst conditions in librated areas in the state, many of them were yet to receive their salaries from state government.”
The chairman stressed the need for government to pay the backlog of 15 months pay arrears of health personnel whose salaries were stopped due to biometric data problem.
He blamed poor delivery of health services and the current state of healthcare in the state to the lack of priority attention to the sector.
He added that the union had been worried over the pressure added to health workers in the state.
Inuwa said: “A health worker that was supposed to be administering to 10 patients was now administering to more than 50 clients, thereby affecting the quality of the work and even the patients.”
He stated that the list of problems facing health workers and the healthcare system in the state was endless, including gross under staffing, the lack of salaries and other motivations.
He said: “How do you expect medical workers to provide good services to the people when their salaries are not paid?”