Federal Government and striking resident doctors will resume talks Friday, 20th August to try to solve the misunderstanding that prompted the ongoing strike.

The Minister of Labour, Senator Chris Ngige, disclosed this to State House correspondents, after he had briefed President Buhari on the agreement to resume talks.

He explained that resumption of the talks was instigated by the intervention of Nigeria Medical Association, NMA, which had shown maturity in facing the problem.

The Minister however said resumption of the talks would not make null the government’s invocation of the Principle of No-work-no-pay against members of the National Association of Resident Doctors, NARD, warning that unless a solution is found, the principle of No-Work-No-Pay would remain effective.

He acknowledged that the doctors had the right to down tools, but that the employer of labour had equal rights to withhold salaries and wages until a solution is found.

The Minister described NARD’s resumed strike as illegal and injurious to the nation at a time the country was battling with the third wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to him, it is illegal for the doctors to have embarked on the strike without giving adequate notice to the government, dismissing NARD’s claims that it merely resumed a suspended strike.

The Minister said the doctors’ demands were not only directed at the federal government, pointing out that some state governments are the pivots of the problem.

Senator Ngige explained that the allowances in contention had been sourced, but that it cannot be paid due to non-compliance with the IPPIS payment policy.

Bello Wakili