By Luminous Jannamike
ABUJA – Following the refusal of the Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Usman Yusuf, to obey the decision of the scheme’s governing council to suspend him over alleged gross misconduct, some unionists have continued to mount pressure on the federal government to compel him to vacate office.
Speaking on Thursday in Abuja during the ongoing protest by NHIS workers against Yusuf’s continued stay in office, the unionists said his obedience of the suspension order would allow a thorough investigation into allegations raised against him.
According to Abubakar Shanabo, a representative of the NLC and the Chairman, Medical and Health Workers Union (MHWUN) FCT Council, the protest over the resumption of the Executive Secretary must continue until victory was ascertained.
“This is the third day of this protest and we will not relent, I have been mandated by the national body that we are in full support of the struggle.
“We insist that Yusuf remains suspended and must vacate his office for the administrative panel to carry on with their investigation.
“We call on the Federal Government to do the needful as it stands for integrity with zero tolerance for corruption, if nothing is done TUC and NLC national bodies will carry on with the protest on Oct 29.
“The enrollees are being affected and not getting the maximum health services they deserve, therefore peace and sanity must return to the scheme,’’ he said.
Similarly, Adediwura Adeshina, who is Chairman, Stakeholders Committee of National Association of Nigeria Colleges of Education Students also called on the federal government to resolve the continuous conflicts in NHIS.
Adeshina said that the scheme expected to function effectively as the health insurer for tertiary institution students across the country could not function due to problems.
“I was part of the representatives in 2013 that signed an agreement during the introduction of the Tertiary Institution Social Health Insurance Scheme under the NHIS.
“I know the way it started and I have the guideline of how it should function and all the students complied and keyed into the scheme.
“Today, the Nigerian students are not benefiting from the scheme anymore; if the system is not working the regulatory body should take over and sanitise it.
“We will not relent in the struggle, this is a sacrifice and we will pay the price for the freedom of our members,’’ he said..