The Nigerian Medical Association, NMA, has disclosed in what would be termed “exposition of intention”, that it would only support a presidential candidate whose blueprint in the health sector addresses the nation’s current health challenges and is in line with the United Nations’ recommended standards.
IsL source gathered that president of NMA, Dr Uche Ojinmah, who made this declaration at a briefing in Abuja, Tuesday, to market the 2022 Physician’s Week, said the organisation was patiently waiting for the presidential candidates to roll out their plans in the health sector before it chooses its preferred choice among the contestants ahead of the 2023 general elections
IsL source also reports that Ojinmah, who swore that the era of blind loyalty was over and subsequently warned state governments against seizing or slashing the salaries of medical personnel and rather paying it piecemeal at the governments’ convenience without interest.
The association president lamented that Nigerian doctors have been taken from the lofty heights of nobility to nothingness by the neglect and possible disdain for the health sector by successive governments in the country.He said:”The era of blind loyalty is over. Let us all patiently wait to hear the plans of the presidential candidates for Nigeria, especially in the Health sector before pitching our political support tent.
“Let me inform you all that the Nigerian doctor is poorly paid, over worked, lack necessary work tools and has become a target for kidnap. We as Nigerian doctors have been taken from the lofty heights of nobility to nothingness by the neglect and possible disdain for the health sector by successive governments.
“The penchant of state governments for seizing or slashing our salaries and paying it piecemeal at their convenience without interest has become a subject of folklore and hence cannot be allowed to continue.
“On the need to review CONMESS, let me inform you that the ball is now in the court of the Government and they are foot-dragging.
“Let no one take our civility for weakness as we shall do all within limits of legality to protect the interest of the Nigerian doctor while the Government continues in their “search” for obvious reasons behind medical brain drain. It is a heartbreaking situation for Nigerian doctors because a review of CONMESS has been due since 2014 based on the 2009 Collective Bargaining Agreement we signed with the Government which stipulated a review after five years.
“We hereby call on all well-meaning citizens and statesmen to intervene now and not blame doctors later.”