The Chairman of the Joint Health Sector Unions (JOHESU) and National President of the Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria (MHWUN), Comrade Joy Josiah Biobelemoye, speaks on the crisis in the health sector, the on-going nationwide strike and why the crisis cannot be resolved except President Muhammadu Buhari personally intervenes. MOSES JOHN reports.
Court injunction against JOHESU I don’t know of any court injunction. I have not received one, neither my legal department has reported to me that they had a notice and so they are going to court. So, I am not aware. Respecting court ruling that is one of the reasons why I am doubting if any court will even give such a reward to the Federal Ministry of Health, Federal Ministry of Labour or their proxies; because this very courts have given their rulings; between eight to nine rulings, they have disrespected.
So, I am not too sure they have the moral right to even go to court to approach the court, but if they have gone through the proxy, I believe the court would not even grant it because they have disobeyed the same court. NMA position Certainly, it cannot be justifi ed. Service wide, people of equal grades in any sector earn equal basic value.
What makes the difference is the peculiar allowances. For instance, if someone enters as a clerical officer, passes his promotion and confi rmation exams and gets moving until he has additional qualifi cations, moves to executive cadre and gets to grade level 12, his own basic will be the same as any others who enters at grade level 12. Or like Architects, engineers and lawyers, if that man gets to level nine, no separate basic is provided or produced for them because a junior cadre person has grown to level nine. Now, if that is not possible, we are talking of graduates, two groups of graduates where some are trained for eight years, the doctors are trained for eight years, and the others are trained for between six and eight years under JOHESU. Nurses are trained for seven years, that is post NYSC.
They are trained five years academic, one year internship and one year youth service. Doctors are trained six years academic, one year houseman-ship and one year youth service. Optometric within JOHESU are trained for eight years too, six years academic, like doctors, one year internship and one year youth service. Even these ones that are trained for equal years with the doctors are still not entering service at grade level 12.
They are entering at grade level 10 which is CONHESS 9 and their salary is not equal to that of a doctor who just entered service even after they get promoted to level 12 after three years in service. For nurses who enter at level eight, after nine years they get promoted to level 12, their salary is still lower than a fresh doctor who is employed today. So, we begin to ask, what is the parity? Giving this explanation in terms of figures, let us take the upper limit, a doctor who is on CONMESS 7, which is the apex of their service progression goes home with N704,000 before the adjustment; far higher than someone on CONHESS 15, which is the apex on our own side, is going home with .