The nationwide strike called by the health workers’ union has taken a toll on federal health institutions across Nigeria and patients have been at the receiving end.
For instance, business activities were grounded at the National Hospital, Abuja, on Friday, following the nationwide strike declared by the Joint Health Workers Union.
The development came as JOHESU accused the Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu of insincerity.
The Minister stated that the Federal Government had appealed the ruling of Justice Babatunde Adejumo of the National Industrial Court on the 2012 Memorandum of Understanding, signed by government and the workers.
Investigations revealed that staff of NH complied with the strike and refused to go to work.
A source in the Hospital, however, told our correspondent that “some nurses were kept on standby in the Accident and Emergency Department in the interest of patients.”
The Spokesperson of NH, Dr. Tayo Haastrup, told Saturday PUNCH that arrangements had been made to take care of patients.
He said, “We have a reasonable number of patients that have not been discharged. Our doctors are working and they are managing them. The foreign doctors, House Officers, NYSC members are at work and interns are working.”
The Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Idi-Araba and the Federal Medical Centre, Ebute-metta, are two of the four major federal hospitals in Lagos that are affected.
The affected workers include nurses, pharmacists, laboratory technologists and other health workers, except medical doctors.
At LUTH, Saturday PUNCH observed empty lobbies and clinics with many in-patients already discharged, in the absence of the health workers.
Only the doctors and some locum cleaners were sighted in the wards.
A patient, who identified himself as Biodun, said his drugs had been coming about four hours late.
He said, “For example, the drugs we are meant to take in the morning by 9am don’t come until about 1pm and it’s because the nurses are on strike. Even when we are in pains and need to call a nurse, they are not there, so it’s the doctors that we have been calling on their lines.”
At the FMC, Ebute-metta, Saturday PUNCH learnt that all patients were discharged from the hospital, on Thursday.
Patients at the National Orthopaedic Hospital Enugu, on Friday said that the strike embarked on by health workers across the country was telling on their health condition.
They told our correspondents that their relatives and friends had been the ones dressing and caring for them since the health workers in the hospital joined the strike.
“The doctors here sometimes do the work of the nurses and laboratory assistants since the strike began,” said Chibuike Okeke, a patient at Male Ward III of the hospital.
He said, “It’s so terrible because my mother is the one who now removes the pipe I use in urinating since I have a broken leg and waist and can’t move from my bed.”
But a doctor at ESUTH, Dr. Christian Ochi, said the situation at the hospital is near resolved as a meeting has been held where it was agreed on that final medical students would be converted to nurses, and final year medical laboratory students would to laboratory assistants.
“This is the outcome of the meeting we held by 12 noon today Friday,” Ochi added.
At the Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, Nnewi, services were virtually paralysed as all the health workers apart from doctors and security staffs were on duty.
Only skeletal services were being rendered by ad-hoc staff brought in to help the doctors, who were attending to patients on admission.
However, authorities of the University College Hospital, Ibadan, have said the hospital would not be completely shut down as a result of the ongoing strike.
After a 21-day ultimatum which ended on Wednesday, JOHESU sited the non-implementation of the MOU as one of its reasons for proceeding on strike along with other contentious issues such as the implementation of CONHESS 10, the National Health Bill and government’s failure to appoint health professionals as consultants.
Meanwhile JOHESU has reiterated that Chukwu should be held responsible for the inconveniences caused by the
Criminal minds threatening Army with travel ban: Buratai
Tukur Buratai, Nigeria’s Chief of Army Staff has disclosed that he does not mind living in Nigeria for the rest of his life.
Buratai made this statement on Monday in a meeting with Army Commanders in Abuja, where they deliberated on the recent End SARS protest and pockets of violence across the country.
Information Nigeria recalls there have been calls by International bodies calling for a travel ban to be placed on some military officers accused of human rights abuses in Nigeria.
Buratai attacked the international organizations clamoring for a ban on top personnel and soldiers over rights abuses. According to him, his first trip outside Nigeria was when he was 50 and that he doesn’t mind if he has to live in Nigeria for the rest of his life.
“Criminal elements are threatening us with travel ban but we are not worried because we must remain in this country to make it better. The first time I travelled outside of this country, I was already 50 years and a General, so I don’t mind if I live the rest of my life here” The Cable quoted him as saying
At the meeting, the Army chief said recent events across the country have shown the determination of unscrupulous individuals and groups to cause chaos by all means.
“The events of the past few days in our dear nation have shown the determination of some unscrupulous individuals and groups to destabilise Nigeria by all means,” he said.
These individuals, groups and other undesirable elements have hijacked the peaceful #EndSARS protest marches resulting to widespread violence, acts of wanton destruction and looting of public and private properties in many parts of the country. These acts led to the imposition of curfew in several states of the federation.
Despite all these, the army has continued to exercise restraint applied all the principles of internal security operations and fully abided by the internationally recognised rules of engagement as contained in our published standard operating procedures for internal security operations which are derived from the International human rights laws and are in accordance with the international principles guiding the use of force.” he said.
How iron protector prevented my shop from being robbed: Business man
Chima Smart Nwaneri, a businessman who operates in Owerri, Imo state has disclosed how suspected robbers were unable to burgle his office due to an iron protector.
Nwaneri thanked God for wisdom saying they couldn’t access his goods because of the protector on his ceiling.
Chima wrote on his Twitter account;
“So robbers visited my office where i do my business, but I thank God for wisdom, they couldn’t enter because of the protector on the ceiling..
Help me thank God….”
#EndSARS: We are not collection of angels, Nigerian Police says
The Nigerian police have said its officers are not angels, but the force is doing its best to serve Nigerians better.
This was disclosed in a statement posted on Twitter by the force. This comes after several unrest and pockets of violence that greeted the endsSARS protest against police brutality.
The Nigerian police appear to have started an online campaign to redeem their image and rebuild trust with Nigerian citizens, following the nationwide #EndSARS protests and its devastating fallout.
The security agency which admitted that it is not a collection of angels, however told Nigerians that it is doing its best to ensure better services.
The police, Monday night, uploaded a campaign flyer on Twitter, via their official handle @PoliceNG.
“We are not a collection of angels, but we are doing our best to serve you better,” said the flyer which was produced by the police public relations department, Force Headquarters, Abuja.
— Nigeria Police Force (@PoliceNG) October 26, 2020
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