LAGOS STRIKING DOCTORS ADAMANT AS GOVT RECRUITS NEW ONES
As the Lagos State Government goes ahead to recruit new doctors to call the bluff of the striking members of the state Medical Guild, the latter has remained adamant on the demands. The doctors began their indefinite strike last week over pay and other demands.
The industrial action which came few days after the doctors called off a three-day warning strike, was as a result of continued industrial disharmony between the Medical Guild and the state government.
Recall that the state government issued a query to the doctors as they returned from the warning strike, which the Guild said it will answer collectively before a panel, but later reneged due to alleged harassment and intimidation by the state government.
But Chairman, Medical Guild, Dr Olumuyiwa Odusote, said yesterday that the group is waiting to see what will be the outcome of the present recruitment of doctors.
'We are watching and waiting to see what the recruitment of new doctors will come to. If the government wants to replace experienced doctors with inexperienced hands, we will see what would be the outcome. In any case, the new doctors are welcome to the Medical Guild.'
Asked if employment of the new doctors will not make the striking doctors lose their jobs, he said that his members are not afraid of sack as opportunities for jobs abound for them locally and internationally.
'If we do not work for Lagos State, there are job opportunities elsewhere. America announced its move to recruit 500,000 doctors. You can be sure that majority of those doctors will come from Africa, and Nigeria will supply a large number of the personnel
'If we are going to work for Lagos State, the terms of employment must be followed. When a child is crying, it will be unfair for the father to beat the child more, rather than trying to find out what is causing the child the pain and resolving it.
'I am not saying that the motive of the strike is for Lagos State Government to disengage us, but rather for the full implementation of the Consolidated Medical Salary Scale (CONMESS) to doctors working in the state. However, if the good people of Lagos State want us to go as a result of this agitation,we are ready to go.
'I want to appeal to Lagosians once more to mediate in the on-going crisis in the health sector and let justice and fairplay reign,' he said.