Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Lagos Doctors Upset Over Governor Fashola's Refusal To Pay Their Salaries or Honour CONMESS Agreement

A fresh crisis seems to be brewing between the Government of Lagos State and its medical doctors.
In a new press statement signed by the chairman of the Lagos Medical Guild, Dr. Muyiwa Odusote, the doctors are complaining about their unpaid salaries for the month of May; an undue deduction for the month of April; contemptuous treatment by the State Government; and a persistent show of unconcern for the CONMESS agreement it reached with them before it illegally sacked all 788 doctor two months ago.
The Guild decried the victimisation by the Lagos State Health Commission of a Principal Medical Officer who recently had a verbal exchange with one of the doctors recruited by the Government during the period the doctors were agitating for the implementation of the CONMESS agreement.
The doctors are also unhappy that the subject matter of their grievance with the Lagos State Government is still being treated with levity by the government of Babatunde Fashola.
Since the resumption of medical services in the hospitals, the Lagos State branch of the Nigerian Medical Association and the Medical Guild say they have written a series of letters to the Lagos State Government requesting meetings and mechanisms to be put in place to resolve all the outstanding issues that led to and emanated from the recent health sector crisis, including CONMESS.
The government, however, is yet to invite the NMA or the Medical Guild to any meeting to look into these issues. “The only correspondence from government was to inform us about a committee it set up to review wage matters of health workers,” the statement said. “We however do not know the composition of this committee, neither have we received any correspondence from the committee.”
It will be recalled that the Lagos State Government said it sacked all 788 doctors owing to an industrial action hinging on their demand for the implementation of the CONMESS agreement in Lagos State. The CONMESS policy was initiated by the Federal Government and is said to be the basic minimum salary for all the medical doctors nationwide.
Doctors in Lagos State had demanded for the implementation of the agreement, but the State Government responded by sacking all 788 doctors in its employ.
Several protests, court actions and solidarity strike actions by other unions and bodies, including NUPENG, followed the illegal sacking of the doctors, but the State Government said it recalled the doctors only because of the intervention of some prominent members of the State's ruling Action Congress of Nigeria.

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