Press Release On The Ongoing JOHESU Strike
- Written by Oluwafemi Olowookere
The attention of the Honourable Minister of Health has been drawn to an unwarranted One and Half page advert published in the Daily Trust Newspaper of Saturday April 28, 2018 by the Joint Health Sector Unions and Assembly of Heath care Professionals, JOHESU, where it was stated that the Honourable Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole DENIED the existence of an agreement between the Federal Government and JOHESU in 2014.
This response is to correct the misinformation being fed to the public by JOHESU and also to inform the general public of efforts being made by the Federal Government in order to avoid incessant strike in the health sector.
- The current strike action is unfortunate as `the health and wellbeing of many Nigerians have been affected.
- The Honourable Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole wishes to reiterate that there was NO AGREEMENT between the Federal Government and JOHESU prior to the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
- That what JOHESU brandish as 2014 agreement were minutes of meetings they had with the organs of Federal Government.
- That in September 2017, JOHESU presented 15-point demand and the Federal Government has implemented 14 while the last demand is still been attended to by the High Level Body set up by the government to look into its implementation.
- Indeed, what the September 2017 agreement stated UNDER THE UPWARD ADJUSTMENT OF CONHESS salary scale and as published by JOHESU is that: ‘The meeting noted that two different figures had been submitted to the National Salaries and Wages Commission on separate occasions. It was observed that the figures are no longer realistic due to lapse of time. The NSIWC should therefore do a fresh submission based on new data consistent with the present reality. The FMOH is expected to make available necessary and required data to NSIWC to enable fresh computation. The newly computed figures will be forwarded by National Salaries and Wages Commission to the Federal Ministry of Health for onward transmission for processing to the high level body (HLB), of the government and thereafter to Federal Ministry of Health within five weeks.’ THIS HAS BEEN DONE
- That we as a responsible government will do everything within our power to bring the ongoing strike action to an end as quickly as possible.
- That indeed the Federal Government has put machinery in place to ensure that the strike is called off by meeting with JOHESU officials on several occasions, the last being on Wednesday April 25, 2018, at the office of the Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment in Abuja.
- That an offer has been made to adjust the salaries and wages of JOHESU members by the Federal Government.
- But what JOHESU is asking for is PARITY with medical doctors which is not practicable nor acceptable to the Federal Government.
- A cursory look at the salary tables in the health sector before and after Independence till date have always reflected RELATIVITY.
- The 2014 salary adjustment for Medical Doctors was to correct the anomaly of 2009 and restore RELATIVITY.
- That our meeting with JOHESU will reconvene today (Monday April 30, 2018) to find an amicable resolution to the issue.
- The Federal Government wishes to appeal to JOHESU to immediately call off the strike and allow the High Level Body to conclude its assignment as contained in the 2017 agreement.
- The administration of President Muhammadu Buhari will not renege on any agreement entered into with any labour organisation including JOHESU.
- The Honourable Minister of Health wishes to seize this opportunity to appeal to the general public to bear with the Federal Government as all hands are on the table to bring the ongoing strike to an end as quickly as possible.