The Federal Government has been given a seven-day deadline by the Senior Staff Association of Universities Teaching Hospitals, Research Institutes, and Associated Institutions (SSAUTHRIAI) to pay arrears of hazard allowances owing to its members.
Following a two-day meeting in Calabar on October 12 and 13, the Association announced this in a statement signed by its acting chairman, Mr. Kabir Mustapha, and acting secretary, Mr. Joseph Ugwoke. To prevent an industrial crisis in the healthcare industry, the association decided that it could no longer guarantee continuous services if its members’ outstanding debts were not paid in full within a week.
They said that despite numerous letters to the Federal Government, the payment had been delayed. They also claimed that the government had chosen to pay doctors in tranches of four and five months while ignoring other health professionals.
The association demanded the Federal Government to pay the remaining 40% of the COVID-19 Special Inducement Allowance, which is two months overdue for its members.
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They said: “We demand the payment of 40 per cent balance of the remaining two months to our members who were erroneously paid 10 per cent.
“Also, the association notes with dismay the rate at which health workers especially professionals are migrating out of the country for greener pastures.
“This is due to the poor condition surrounding our health facilities, no consumables for health workers to work with and a poor welfare packages”.
Taking advantage of the occasion, the group urged the federal government to swiftly put into effect the agreement on the Consolidated Health Salary Structure adjustment made on September 30, 2017. (CONHESS).
Additionally, it asked all levels of government to immediately return third-party deductions as well as deducted but unremitted contributions to unions, cooperatives, and other organizations.
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