Nigerian doctors embark on strike amidst coronavirus pandemic

The Association of Resident Doctors (ARD), Abuja chapter, on Tuesday, March 17; announced their decision to proceed on an indefinite strike despite the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.

This announcement was coming in the aftermath of the confirmation of the third case of coronavirus in Lagos.

The doctors said they deliberated extensively on the health threat posed by the coronavirus scare; their work conditions, and patient care before arriving at the “difficult decision.”

In a statement signed by its president, Roland Aigbovo; the association said the mass action followed the failure of the FCT administration to pay them their basic salaries for more than two months.

Aigbovo said their members have been thrown into financial distress. This is due to the nonpayment of their salaries and despite repeated warnings and ultimatum; nothing has been done by authorities.

He said there has been salary irregularities and shortfalls since the migration to the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System by the FCTA.

The union leader said other health workers who are also affected by the salary shortfalls will join the mass action within 48 hours if their demands “which are the same with ours are not met.”
The Lagos State Ministry of Health on Tuesday confirmed the third case of coronavirus in Nigeria.

Akin Abayomi, the Lagos State Commissioner for Health, broke the news to journalists at the government secretariat on Tuesday.

“This is a new case independent of the index case of a 30-year-old Nigerian, female, who returned from the UK on 13th March,” the commissioner said.

Abayomi said the patient, who initially showed symptoms of the infection, observed self-isolation, and thereafter tested positive.

Although Nigeria has so far recorded three cases of the virus, only two are active. The second case, linked to the index case, later tested negative.

Ng daily

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