Health workers are angry with doctors in Nigeria that have openly showed no support for their demands and their plight, as their strike that began over a month ago persists. 

They want the government to meet their demands, one of which was "parity with medical doctors," but the Minister of health has said it was neither practicable nor acceptable to the federal government. 

On a daily basis almost, there has been disagreement between the members of the Joint Health Sector Union (JOHESU) and those of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA).

On Saturday, days after doctors said some health workers were addicted to strike, the members of JOHESU attacked the NMA members accusing them of persistently attempting to misinform the public through malicious fabrication of accusation and blatant lies that JOHESU members had locked up theatres, consulting rooms, laboratories and wards.

The Chairman of the Assembly of Healthcare Professionals Association (AHPA), Dr Godwin Okara, expressed concern over the situation.

“It beats imagination that NMA will go to any ridiculous length in giving bad names to a dog in order to hang it," he said.

He dismissed insinuations by the NMA that their members were intimidated by JOHESU officials and hospital authorities lack the power to keep the gates and doors of our health facilities open.

According to him, JOHESU members have conducted themselves with the highest degree of restraint and discipline in the face of provocation and double-dealing by the Federal Ministry of Health and NMA.

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But the AHPA chairman commended the leadership of the Senate for their recent intervention aimed at ensuring full and amicable resolution of the crisis.

Okara also appreciated all men and women of good conscience that have lend their voices of reason to JOHESU’s struggle for improved healthcare facilities in the country, justice, fairness and equity in the health sector.

The continued strike has resulted in deaths of some persons.

An association of persons living with HIV/AIDShas blamed the deaths of some of its members on the health workers' strike.

While sympatising with patients and their relatives over the pangs of the strike, he appealed to the general public to understand that the strike was in the best interest of improving the country’s health sector.

Okara urged members of JOHESU to sustain the strike pending the outcome of national consultative meetings with states and zonal leaders of the union to review the latest situation and decide on the next line of action on May 27 and 28 in Abuja, respectively.

The JOHESU official therefore urged the Federal Government to implement the agreement reached with the union on September 30, 2017, to avoid further loss of lives. 

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