The National President, Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), Dr Osahon Enabulele, on Friday said the ongoing doctors` warning strike was aimed at drawing Federal Government’s attention to the health sector’s problems.
Enabulele spoke to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos against the backdrop of NMA’s resolutions at the 2013 National Health Summit in Asaba in January.
“Virtually all sectors are involved in one industrial conflagration or the other, in terms of strike, as a result of government`s poor response to the needs of workers.
“People over the years have gotten a pattern of securing their demands through agitations and through strike.
“But, I think why the people always feel pained when doctors are on strike is that the responsibility of a doctor is all about life.
“And when we made those resolutions in Asaba, which was an all-embracing resolution, we also had no illusion that we could turn around very drastically the mentality and the psyche of the people who have been attuned to a way of life.
“There was agreement, there was understanding.
“But again, when you have a breach of some of these understandings, there is an extent to which you can continually draw the people back from, of course, responding because they buy from the same market with other people”.
Enabulele also urged governments to always keep to agreements reached with the doctors and provide the enabling environment to avoid strikes in the sector.
“I want to assure you that NMA is still very committed towards ensuring that as much as it’s possible, the incidence of strike actions in the Nigerian health sector, at least by doctors, is reduced.
“With the condition that the other side of the divide, in other words, the government, does its own part of the bidding by ensuring that the needed recourses, the enabling environment, is put on ground.
“Because, the hypocrite, who even formulated the concept of the Hippocratic Oath, gave the profound condition for the observance of that oath.
“And, I think this is the message that people must continually get to understand”.
It would be recalled that NMA had on Dec.15 directed its members to embark on a five-day nationwide warning strike.
The strike is to protest what it said was the doctors’ poor working conditions, inadequate funding, and poor infrastructure in the nation’s health sector. (NAN)