The FCT Minister of State, Dr Ramatu Aliyu, has called on striking doctors to call off the action in view of the current global health challenge.
NAN reports that members of the Association of Resident Doctors, Federal Capital Territory Administration (ARD-FCTA) embarked on an indefinite strike over non-payment of salaries.
Aliyu made the call in a statement after a meeting with the ARD-FCTA.
In the statement signed by her Special Assistant on Media, Mr Austine Elemue, on Wednesday in Abuja, Aliyu described the strike embarked upon by resident doctors as unhealthy for residents of the territory.
She urged the striking doctors to embrace dialogue in resolving serious issues among health workers and other industrial bodies.
Aliyu also maintained that the FCT Administration always treated matters relating to the health profession with high level of seriousness and urgency.
” This is not a happy gathering for me. I had to leave the Federal Executive Council ( FEC) meeting to address this issue because of the seriousness the administration attaches to health matters.
“Before you embark on this industrial action, did you consider the oath of this reverend profession in view of the global health challenges?
” If the dreaded Coronavirus (COVID-19) hits the FCT, God forbid, it will affect all of us including the striking doctors.
“Is there anything that ARD-FCTA requested from the administration and we failed to address?
” The delay in salary was as a result of migrating from one platform to another which affected all secretariats and departments. You should bear in mind that in every construction or reconstruction, people must make sacrifices.
“To be honest with you, the strike is uncalled for and it is not healthy. We should learn to respect the rights and privileges of others. We should not forget in a hurry that we will still end up on the roundtable to resolve pressing issues,” hr said.
The minister, who appealed for synergy and proper communication on both sides, called on the striking doctors to call off the strike based on overriding public interest.
Earlier, the President of FCT Resident Doctors, Dr Roland Aigbovo, stated that members of the body decided to embark on the strike to enable the authorities address salary shortfalls, and skipping arrears.
He commended the FCT administration for efforts made in the past to resolve the lingering issues amicably and assured the minister that the strike would be called off after meeting with other members on Thursday.
Aigbovo, also assured the minister that House Officers were at work in in all public health facilities across the territory.