Doctors' Strike: Civil Society Seeks Fashola's Resignation
LAGOS, Nov 04, (THEWILL) - Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Raji Fashola has been given a 7-day ultimatum to resign from office for failing to adequately resolve the on-going strike action by the medical and dental officers in the state.
The ultimatum was today issued at a news conference organised by a coalition of civil society groups under the aegis of Civil Society Intervention Group, who have Fashola to resolve the on-going strike action rocking the state health sector or face mass protest against his administration.
The conference held at the International Press Centre (IPC) in Lagos was attended by the Founder of Coalition against Corrupt Leaders (CACOL), Mr. Dabo Adeniran, Coordinator of the African Centre for Labour Research, Mr. Biodun Sowunmi, Vice President of the Medical Guild and Dr. Taofeek Majolagbe.
In his address, spokesman of the coalition, Mr. Shina Odugbemi blamed the government for the protracted strike, which according to him, has led to the loss of lives since the strike began two months ago.
Odugbemi also called for Fashola’s resignation if he fails to resolve the crisis within seven days, threatening to move corpses to Governor’s Office if he refused to go into fruitful negotiation with the doctors. He said the objective of their action is to stop preventable deaths and suffering of Lagosians.
“We believe that the government is leviathan, using the words of Thomas Hobbes. Our natural rights is all we have all submitted to empower the state where we have Governor Fashola as the custodian of our authority and our natural rights.
“It will be antithetical unproductive and dangerous fur us to fold our arms and allow government to treat issues relating to our health and wellbeing with kid gloves. That is why we are on this rescue mission. Government must immediately concede to the demands of the workers.
“We call on Governor Fashola to immediately accede to the doctor’s demands and commence forth with payment of the consolidated medical salary scale (CONMESS) for doctors employed by the state government so that they can resume work and stop the preventable deaths.
“Finally, we are calling on Governor Fashola to resign within 7 days if he cannot fix the healthcare issues. People have been dying for weeks now and the government is now saying that they will sack all doctors. This is highly irresponsible,” Odugbemi added.
Meanwhile, THEWILL checks has revealed that patients were asked to seek medical help elsewhere yesterday by security officials at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), Idi-Araba and other government run hospitals due to the resolve of doctors at Federal health institutions to embark on a 3-day solidarity strike action in sympathy with their counterpart who are demanding for a better working condition from state governments.
Nurses were however seen rendering skeletal services at the ante-natal wards, while students doctors (interns) were loitered around the premises and corridor of the wards without attending to the teeming patients who had thronged the hospital to receive treatment.