The Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria, Sokoto state chapter, has praised Gov. Aminu Tambuwal’s speedy response in stopping its proposed strike action.
Mr Abdullahi Aliyu, its Chairman, made the commendation while briefing newsmen on the union’s position of suspending its proposed indefinite strike in Sokoto on Saturday.
Newsmen reports that the union on Monday, after a brief meeting proposed to commence an indefinite strike on Oct.24 , over its members’ salary discrepancy.
Aliyu said the quick response of the governor had shown his commitment towards ensuring the provision of quality healthcare services to the people of the state.
“Yes, it is true that we have suspended our proposed strike following the commitment of the state government to address our plight.
“Gov. Aminu Tambuwal had approved the urgent rectification of our members salary discrepancy and the State Primary Health Care Development Agency (SSPHCDA) had made a proper commitment to that.
“Moreover, that is our plight and as a union leaders, we cannot stand and watch our members receiving monthly payment of N8,000 or N12,000.
“While, those appointed under the state healthcare of the same grade level were receiving a monthly salary of N80,000.
”This is our dispute, the gap is too wide. We want this discrepancy to be adequately addressed,” he said.
The chairman called on the members to continue to work diligently and be more committed to the civil service rules of engagement.
Meanwhile, Alhaji Abubakar Chika, the Special Adviser, SSPHCDA to Tambuwal, has confirmed the development to NAN.
Chika said, ”for the past five years, SSPHCDA has been working toward addressing the plight of the health workers from local governments when they were moved to the agency.
“I want to tell you that we have been working with the union leaders throughout the process.
“We did the first and second verification exercises and some of them were able to upgrade their educational qualifications.
“Moreover, as you are aware, no civil servant in Sokoto State is paid N8,000 monthly salary, but these are people that we inherited from the LGA’s.
“So, based on the verification exercises, we were able to save the government over N20 million, which we are very sure will address over 50 per cent of the plight of the members of the union,” Chika said.
He added that the challenges had been fully addressed and the governor has directed the state Ministry for Local Governments to provide the needed amount to cover the discrepancy.