Ondo doctors begin strike over half salary payment

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HILLARY ESSIEN

Doctors of the Ondo Government Doctors Forum, have commenced an indefinite strike over half salary payments for November 2020.

“Doctors in Ondo are working under harsh conditions. We cannot work from home. It is unfathomable that we are being paid half salary. We are not insensitive to the hardship this action will bring. It is our hope that the government will get back to us,”  Dr. Omolayo Olubosede, spokesperson for the doctors, said to The Nation. 

Dr. Olubosede said the body had written to the state governor to inform him of their difficulties, but had gotten no reply. 

The decision to strike was reached after an emergency meeting of the forum, where the doctors established that they cannot survive on part salaries. 

The conditions for the indefinite strike to be called off include payment of salary arrears, appointment of more doctors to replace vacancies, the implementation of Group Life Insurance, and others.

Dr. Jibayo Adeyeye, the Acting Commissioner for Health said that the government would meet with the doctors so that they would resume their duties soon.

Last week, labour in the state had agreed to adopt the local governments payment model for subsequent salaries as well as payment of half salaries. 

This agreement was reached following state Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu’s move to stop borrowing funds to make up for salary payments, deeming it unsustainable.

The Head of Service, Oluwadare Aragbaiye, shared the contents of  federal allocation receipts to the state for December 2020 at a meeting with Ondo labour leaders. These receipts showed that payment of salaries for state workers amounted to N5.2 billion, but the allocation to Ondo for the month of December was only N2.3 billion.

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