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Direct your appeal to striking Osun doctors, not Buhari – Aregbesola replies NMA

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The back and forth between the Osun State government and the Nigerian Medical Association, NMA, continued on Friday with Governor Rauf Aregbesola describing as misplaced the association appeal for President Muhammadu Buhari and the All Progressives Congress, APC, to intervene in the abandonment of duty posts by some of its Osun State branch members.

The NMA had yesterday issued a statement appealing to President Buhari and governing APC to prevail on Aregbesola to succumb to the doctors’ demands.

But responding in a statement issued on Friday by Mr. Semiu Okanlawon, the Director, Bureau of Communications and Strategy in his office, the Governor said the NMA’s appeal should rather go to its members in Osun, who have abandoned their duty posts for close to a year.

While disclosing that his administration had exhausted all avenues to solve the problem through dialogues and negotiations, Aregbesola stated that all moves to resolve the problem amicably were turned down by the doctors, who incidentally were being paid their monthly salaries without working up until September 2015.

He said that the striking doctors initially created the problem themselves by going against the accepted modulated salary regulation applying to over 40,000 workforce of the state and so, it is normal that they should also be the ones to extricate themselves from the logjam.

The Governor maintained that it amounts to sheer hypocrisy on the part of the doctors for them to demand what is outside the capacity of government, judging from the present economic reality.

According to the statement, “The appeal to President Buhari and APC is, to all intents and purposes, misplaced, misdirected and improper in that respect.

“One would have expected the NMA to properly address the situation by forwarding its appeal to the respected quarters it should go – the Osun striking doctors.

“Since the beginning of the strike nine months ago, government has opened its door for consultations, dialogues and meetings to resolve the matter but all these were frustrated by the doctors, who were still drawing their salaries despite having abandoned their duty.”

Aregbesola further called on the NMA to remind its colleagues of the need to uphold the Hippocratic Oath they swore to, which in essence is to protect life and not endanger it.

The statement concluded by assuring that the state government is ready to cooperate with them whenever the striking doctors toe the path of dignity, sincerity and understanding like other workers in the state

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