Why FG will not pay Doctors on strike-Ngige

By allcitynews.ng

Apparently displeased with their ongoing strike despite appeals, the Minster of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige has announced why Federal Government will not pay for the striking periods by the doctors.

Ngige describing the strike as illegal action said, ” I Won’t support illegality. Paying them is encouraging them for their illegal action.”

It would be recalled that the doctors under the aegis of Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), embarked on strike since August 2, 2021 over irregular payment of salaries, among other issues.

Efforts by stakeholders, including the National Assembly, to mediate between the Federal Government and the resident doctors failed to yield results.

Speaking on Saturday when Sam Jaja, chairman of the Forum of Health Institutions in Nigeria (FCHIN), paid him a visit in Abuja, Ngige said he will not support the demand of the doctors because it is against the law.

“[The doctors want that] section 43 of the Trade Dispute Act should not apply to them. That we should insert in a government agreement that they should be paid for the period they are not at work. I’m being careful about this,” the minister said.

“This is law and I will not lend myself to illegality, to state in the agreement that a group of Nigerians are above the law. But as a matter of fact, a clause in that agreement states clearly that nobody should be punished for participating or not participating in the strike.

“So what else do they want ? They want me to put in writing that they are above the law. That “no work, no pay” policy should not apply to them. That the “no work, no pay” is no more part of our law, despite the fact that I swore to uphold the constitution?

“This is notwithstanding that a clause in the agreement says that no one should be punished for any role in the strike.”