This was recently revealed in a statement by the Deputy Director, Press and Public Relations, Charles Akpan in Abuja, and Nigerians have been reacting.
According to him, instead of focusing on misquoting Ngige, NMA should sit up and address the challenge of series of illegal strike, which junior doctors in NARD have been embarking on, especially the current one that is affecting Nigerians.
He added that the NMA should concentrate on doing everything possible to stem the series of industrial action by the junior doctors in the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD).
His words, “Instead of dissipating energy on interpreting the comments of the Minister which at best could be regarded as an obiter, the NMA should sit up and address the challenge of series of illegal strike which junior doctors in NARD have been embarking on , especially the current one that started on April 1 , 2021 with the connivance and tacit support of the NMA.”
“Nothing can be further from the truth than the interpretations and imputations given to his comment in the press especially the recent press statement by the NMA. To be accurate, in a question and answer session in a television interview programme regarding the ongoing strike by the National Association Resident Doctors (NARD) the interviewer sought to know Federal Government’s efforts towards promoting medical personnel training, better pay, medical services in order to stop brain drain of doctors to greener pastures.”
“The minister answered that nobody (no government) pays anything to resident doctors rather resident doctors pay something to train themselves. He also said that that Nigerian government pays salaries and some aspect of the training of resident doctors such as books, exam fees among others.”
“What the Minister meant was that governments all over the world do not involve themselves directly in paying for residency training and hence do not pay anything. A figurative use of the word “nobody” means no government as per the interviewer’s question which referenced the role of government.”
“This should therefore not be mischievously misapplied to mean that resident doctors in other climes are not paid remunerations by their employers. Every employee gets remuneration in labour. They are paid by their employers who are the hospitals with whom they have entered into contract for various terms but those employers do not pay for things like examination fees, books, accommodation etc. They stop at salaries and allowances.”
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