Mr Femi Gbajabiamila,

Speaker House of Representatives Mr Femi Gbajabiamila, has met with relevant government officials with a view to averting the resumption of the strike by the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD).

Mr Gbajabiamila, who chaired the meeting said that stakeholders in the health sector must work together to avert another strike of the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD).

He urged the government to fulfil its promise to the association.

At the meeting, issues such as non-payment of house officers, abolishment of bench fees, non-payment of national minimum wage, salary shortfall for 2014, 2015, and 2016, residency training allowance, and payment of resident doctors on GIFMIS platform were discussed.

The Director-General, Budget Office, Mr Ben Akabueze, informed the Speaker that action was being taken on the issues at stake and that a recommendation was submitted to the Minister of Finance, hajiya Zainab Ahmed, for approval after which payment would be made.

On his part, the permanent secretary in the finance ministry, Shehu Shinkafi, who represented the minister, said he would report back to her so that payment could be made before May 7.

It was agreed that another meeting would be held on Tuesday, May 4, for a conclusion on some of the issues at stake to avoid the planned resumption of the strike by the doctors.

The resident doctors had earlier this month embarked on an indefinite strike, making some demands and insisting that they must be met before they would call off the strike.

However, with the intervention of the Speaker, Mr Femi Gbajabiamila and other top government officials, the doctors suspended the strike and said if the issues were not resolved, they would resume on May 7.