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EBSUTH workers vow to resume strike Monday

By Dennis Agbo
ABAKALIKI—Workers in Ebonyi State University Teaching Hospital (EBSUTH), have vowed to resume their suspended strike by Monday, if the state  government fails to meet a-3 day deadline given to it by the joint Unions/Associations of EBSUTH to implement the agreements reached between the negotiating committee of the workers and government.

The Unions, yesterday issued a 72-hour ultimatum to the Governor Martin Elechi led-government and the hospital’s management to implement the agreements reached with the workers or the workers would be forced to resume their strike, suspended on June 24, 2009.

The Association of Resident Doctors (ARD), National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives (NANNM), Association of Medical Laboratory Scientists of Nigeria (ANLSN), Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria (M&HWUN), and National Association of Professional Secretarial Staff of Nigeria (NAPSSON) of the hospital, which briefed newsmen yesterday, threatened to resume their strike if government fails to meet their demands.

The workers lamented that three months after signing a 10-point agreement reached with the workers,  the Board/management of the hospital has not lived up to its part of the bargain by fulfilling its part  of the agreement.

Spokesman of the workers,  Dr. Chibuzor Kalu, said that last strike action,  which lasted from April 7 to June 24 was embarked upon by the workers to press home their demand for the implementation of the Consolidated Tertiary Institutions Salary Structure (CONTISS) among others,  aimed at improving the quality of healthcare service in EBSUTH, but that up till date, most part of the agreements have not been met.

Kalu  said that some of the agreements reached before the strike was suspended include that “the Board/management of EBSUTH has accepted to pay enhanced HATISS plus within three months of suspension of this strike; the arrears of the enhanced HATISS plus will be paid subsequently; that the Board accepts to commence the process of recruitment of needed professional/other staff within three months of suspension of this strike to beef-up the available workforce in the hospital,” among others.

Kalu said that on August 5, the joint trade Union/Association leaders wrote the Board, reminding them of the expiration of the two months time-frame for some of the points in the agreement, and yet another letter on August 28 to the Board informing them  that activities/services in EBSUTH might be paralyzed from Tuesday September1, 2009 if the workers’ demands were  not met.


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