NARD brain drain
The logo for the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD).

The Association of Resident Doctors, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (UITH), Kwara State, on Wednesday, joined their counterparts nationwide in the ongoing indefinite strike that commenced today.

The President of the ARD-UITH branch, Dr. Mubarak Ijaiya, who confirmed this to the News Agency of Nigeria in Ilorin, explained that the action was in compliance with instructions from the national secretariat of the association.

According to him, the industrial action is caused by the disagreement between the association and the Federal Government on salary and welfare matters.

Dr. Ijaiya said the association, among other things, is demanding that the government should address all of its six-point demands.

“The demands include the immediate payment of the reviewed Medical Residency Training Fund (MRTF) for the year 2023 as contained in the approved 2023 budget in line with various agreements reached with the government,” he added.

The ARD-UITH president observed that the agreement was for the government to pay all outstanding arrears owed members, including the hazard allowance and the skipping arrears from 2014 to 2016.

Dr. Ijaiya decried the massive low manpower shortage across teaching hospitals, saying that there is a need for implementation of the guidelines on one-for-one replacement of clinical staff.

He urged the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria to discontinue the downgrading of the membership certificate issued by the West African Postgraduate Medical and Surgical colleges.

The ARD-UITH president also lamented the hike in transportation due to subsidy removal, saying that it members now spend about N100,000 a month on transportation to their workplaces.

According to him, the economic situation has become unbearable for members and advised the government at all tiers to prioritise the health sector.