An Industrial Court sitting in Abuja on Thursday stopped the management of Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH) from sacking its resident doctors.
JUTH, in moving to sack the doctors, relied on the Federal Government circular of 2013, which stipulated that the doctors could serve for only six years.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), however, reports that the doctors, through their Counsel, Mr Gyang Zi, have objected to that, citing what they said was the “most recent circular”, dated April 20, 2016.
The 2016 circular allows the doctors to serve for between nine and 10 years, depending on their departments.
Zi, in an exparte motion, urged the court to restrain JUTH’s management from sacking the doctors.
He had argued that sacking them without allowing to serve the mandatory 10 years was “a flagrant abuse and violation of the Federal Government’s Circular of April 20, 2016”.
Justice Waziri Abali, the Vocation Judge of the Industrial Court, who sat on the case on Thursday, directed the JUTH’s management to maintain the status quo pending the determination of the substantive case filed against it by the doctors.
`Both parties are to maintain the status quo until the determination of this motion on notice.
“The other parties in this matter should be put on notice so that the motion on notice can be heard and determined as soon as possible, ’’ the Judge directed.
Abali stated that he was a vocation Judge whose assignment would end on Sept. 8, 2017, adding that the President of Industrial Court of Nigeria would assign the case to any judge to carry on with the master whenever the Judges resume.
The doctors, represented by their President, Dr. Paul Agbo, told NAN that the CMD of JUTH had been using the old circular of 2013, which gave them six years to serve before being disengaged.
He said that sacking them when their tenure of between nine and 10 years had not elapsed was tantamount to abuse of office and an injustice to them.