Just two days after President Muhammadu Buhari left Nigeria for the UK on a routine medical trip, doctors in state-run hospitals have began strike over pay and inadequate facilities, union leaders told AFP. The strike by the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), which represents some 40 percent of Nigeria’s doctors, is the latest in a string of work stoppages to hit the country as it grapples with COVID-19.
“The strike commenced at 8 AM on Thursday, April 1. But the NEC (National Executive Committee) will convene this afternoon to review the situation,” NARD president Uyilawa Okhuaihesuyi told AFP.
He said the review became necessary following a meeting with government representatives on Wednesday.
NARD had threatened to strike if the government failed to meet demands that include non-payment of allowances and lack of facilities in state-run hospitals.
On Wednesday, a government team led by Labour Minister Chris Ngige met with the doctors in a bid to head off the strike.
Ngige appealed to the aggrieved physicians to consider the damage the strike would inflict on an already weakened health system.
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