From Bamigbola Gbolagunte, Akure
Members of the Nigeria Union of Allied Health Professionals (NUAHP) in Ondo State have begun an indefinite strike.
Members of the union have been directed to withdraw their services from state-owned healthcare facilities, hospitals and health centres across the state indefinitely.
Medical doctors in the employ of the state government had since last month embarked on industrial action.
The union is made up of Medical Laboratory Scientists, Optometrists, Physiotherapists, Pharmacists, Health Information Managers/Officers, Dieticians and Radiographers.
The union had earlier informed the government of the hardships being faced by its members due to the inability of the state government to pay salaries regularly and the payment of 50 per cent as part payment of November salary.
The strike has crippled medical activities in all state hospitals across the state.
The state chairman of the union, Mr Adedire Adeyinka, stated that ‘the union, through a letter dated 11th of February, 2020, gave the government a 15-day ultimatum to settle the balance of 50 per cent of November salary, arrears of backlog of salaries (December 2020 and January 2020), not forgetting the previous year’s outstanding salaries.
‘The union also demanded for the payment of outstanding two months COVID-19 special allowances as agreed in May 2020.’
Adeyinka explained that health workers are faced on daily basis with exposures to LASSA FEVER, COVID-19 and other diseases.
He added that without prompt payment of salaries, it will become difficult for their members to fortify their immune system against the ravaging pandemic and other epidemic diseases.
Adedire vowed that members of the union would no longer accept percentage salaries being paid by the state government.