The Joint Health Sector Union (JOHESU) has called for the immediate removal of Prof Isaac Adewole as Nigeria’s Minister of Health.
The union said his continued stay remains a major barrier to the resolution of the ongoing nationwide strike by health workers.
Doctors, under the Nigerian Medical Association, have warned the Nigerian government not to heed the JOHESU demands. The NMA says it will commence its own strike if the government agrees to the JOHESU demands.
JOHESU declared a strike on April 17 following the federal government’s alleged failure to implement an agreement it signed with the union.
The union’s demands include a salary adjustment for its members, improved promotion requirement, and payment of outstanding arrears of promotion.
Others are autonomy of teaching and specialist hospitals, non-execution of court judgments, and review of retirement age from 60-65 years as done for teachers in the tertiary education sector.
The National Chairman of the Union, Biobelemoye Josiah, who made the call for the minister’s removal during an emergency meeting held by members of the union in Abuja on Thursday, accused the minister of taking sides in the ongoing strike action.
He said, “President Buhari should immediately remove Professor Isaac Adewole from office, as his continued stay remains a major barrier to the resolution of the on-going nationwide strike of health workers.
“This is a major threat to Public Health especially at a time that the dreaded Ebola disease is currently rampaging in some African countries.”
Meanwhile, health workers in Lagos, Kano, Yobe and Niger have been directed to relax the strike action to attend to emergency following the implementation of the agreement by the states.