From Ndubuisi Orji and Fred Ezeh, Abuja
House of Representatives, yesterday, summoned the Registrar, Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN), Tajudeen Sanusi, to appear before its committee on Healthcare Services, today, over the ongoing strike by resident doctors.
Chairman,House Committee on Healthcare Services, Tanko Sununu, who disclosed this at a press briefing said the MDCN boss risks arrest if he failed to honour the summon.
Sununu said that Sanusi, who was scheduled to appear before the committee yesterday, had informed lawmakers that he was attending a sitting of the medical council tribunal.
Committee chairman said Sanusi’s action was tantamount to giving precedence to his personal issues over a national emergency.
“Because he is a major stakeholder, we have decided to call off the meeting today and summon him to appear unfailingly before us by 9am tomorrow (Friday), failure which, we are going to invoke all the necessary powers of the National Assembly, including the warrant of arrest on the Registrar. We cannot watch while people are suffering. We also call on the striking doctors to please temper justice with mercy. Everybody believes that your demands are genuine, but there are processes to achieve them,” he said.
Meanwhile, the leadership of the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) has accused Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, of feeding Nigerians with falsehood as regards the ongoing strike by doctors.
The doctors, at the end of their recent virtual National Executive Council (NEC) meeting conveyed to review the ongoing strike, observed that the minister has taken pleasure, lately, in discrediting the doctors and inciting the people against the doctors, instead of finding a lasting solution to industrial actions that had crippled medical services at public health care facilities.
The NEC, in a communique issued at the end of the meeting, observed that despite efforts by the National Officers Committee (NOC) to ensure the Federal Government do the needful to end the strike, it has continued in insincerity of promises, hence the current stalemate in the industrial action.
NARD President, Uyilawa Okhuaihesuyi, expressed the disappointment of NARD NEC over the spurious misinformation being issued out by Ngige.
“We reiterate our commitment to the smooth running of all tertiary institutions and provision of specialist healthcare to Nigerians. But we need to first of all care for our own health and welfare in order to give standard care to our patients. This is in line with the our physician oath,” he said.