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NARD Strike: Doctors may call off by weekend, says Reps

Tanko Sununu, The Chairman, House Committee on Health, yesterday, expressed confidence that the ongoing strike by the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) would be called off before the end of the month. 

He also urged the Ministry of Health to reach an agreement on outstanding salary arrears of doctors as well as residency training funds for 2020 and 2021, as demanded by the aggrieved workers. 

The Director General, Budget Office of the Federation, Ben Akabueze, had informed the lawmakers that N5.42 billion meant for residency training for 2020 and 2021 was available and would be paid once relevant procedure is followed.

Following the disclosure, the lawmakers unanimously called on appropriate offices of government to immediately initiate payment.

As deliberations to find a lasting solution to the issue continued, NARD president, Uyilawa Okhuaihesuyi, told the meeting in blunt terms that the strike would not be called off insisting: “Let everybody suffer the brain drain.”

He told the committee that if the 2015 and 2016 accumulative salaries and promotion arrears of about N28 billion were not paid, the strike would continue.

The Committee and the Minister asked the NARD president to withdraw the statement, describing it as a threat. Okhuaihesuyi, eventually, withdrew the statement with an apology.

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