Striking resident doctors of Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University Teaching Hospital (COOUTH), Awka Anambra State, on Wednesday, rejected the minimum wage offer by Governor Willie Obiano.
They said there was no going back on the indefinite strike action embarked upon on May 13, 2019.
President of the association, Dr. Obinna Aniagboso, who conveyed the governor’s message to his members during its congress meeting in Awka, said the governor offered to pay them the newly approved minimum wage.
He said, “The governor said the wage will amount to N12, 000 increment to all Anambra State civil servants as soon as the national guidelines were released.
According to Aniagboso, the governor had expressed dissatisfaction with the poor payment of salaries, admitting it was due to low Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).
He said the governor promised to revisit resident doctors’ salaries issue next year when the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) might have increased.
The visibly angry members who were already on top of their voices shouting, expressed shock and disappointment at the minimum wage offer.
They wondered why doctors in the hospital should suffer continued neglect, insisting that full payment of their salary should commence from April 2019, as agreed to by government representatives.
They said, “We will no longer continue to receive 40% of our salary. We’ve been languishing in penury with no progress in our residency training.
“With many of us leaving in droves, the hospital will continue to remain stagnant if nothing is done urgently to remedy the situation.”
They also condemned what they described as devious tactics and insincerity of the hospital management, passing unanimous resolution to continue the indefinite strike until demands were met.
They insisted on payments of their April salary balance and continued payment of full salary, as obtained in other institution.
“We are continuing with the strike action pending the implementation of 100% of CONMESS as obtained elsewhere. Let government approve and grant In-service training for all qualified medical officers.
It would be recalled that Association of Resident doctor of COOUTH last week embarked on an indefinite strike action following the failure of the State Government to honour the agreement it signed with the association on 17th January 2019 during their warning strike.