Layi Olanrewaju, Ilorin
Health workers under the umbrella of the Joint Health Staff Union (JOHESU) of the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (UITH) have commenced action to ground activities in the teaching hospital.
Speaking at a rally organised by the striking health workers, in Ilorin, on Wednesday, chairman of the Union, Comrade Olawumi Olutunde, said that the resolution followed a circular by the minister of Health in conjunction with chief medical directors (CMDs) of tertiary institutions to sack all members of the union should they fail to discontinue ongoing strike action and resume work within 24 hours.
It is recalled that intervention of the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, failed to assuage members of the union, who had reportedly rejected 15 per cent salary increase offered during a meeting with leadership of the union on Monday.
The JOHESU leader, who said that members of the union have been directed to discontinue with earlier agreed concession services in the hospital, added that power and water supply would be stopped while laboratory attendants, drivers, mortuary attendants, accounts clerks and others would withdraw their services henceforth.
The health workers also vowed not to resume except their demands of 50 per cent salary adjustment among others were met, saying that they would picket the hospital to check sabotage.
Comrade Olutunde, who said that members of the union were not asking to be equated with medical doctors, added that they only demanded equity and lamented salary disparity between members of the union and medical doctors.
The workers said that salary of medical doctors were adjusted by 50 per cent on three occasions between 2009 and now, demanding that same adjustment should be made on their pay.
“Henceforth, everything is down. We would no longer subscribe to being turned to slaves. We’re not deterred by sack threats because we’ll continue with our agitation even if it takes a year”, he said.