The Chairman, Nigerian Medical Association, Ekiti chapter, Dr. John Akinbote, who justified the strike action, lamented that those sacrificing for robust health care delivery in the country were being abandoned. He said, “People should come out and speak for the doctors. Our strike action is to press home our demand for the payment of four months salaries being owed our members.
“We are all aware of the fuel scarcity and our children are in schools, we have to pay their school fees and also attend to other bills. People will live better if appropriate things are done.
“Morbidity and mortality have increased as a result of poor health condition of our people. The unpaid salaries are exacerbating the medical conditions of Nigerians and the government must do the needful.
“If we refuse to go on strike, the government will just sleep over this matter. The fight is not about doctors alone, but for all workers. How do people get money to go to work when salaries are not paid? We are talking to ARD on how the salaries can be paid, so that they can return to work.”
Akinbote appealed to the state government to find “a balanced ground” to resolve the issue. He said doctors expected the government to do the needful so that the strike would not be prolonged “unnecessarily.”
Our correspondent gathered that relatives of patients in Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital, Ado Ekiti, had been requesting for referrals to Federal Government and private hospitals in the state.
A top member of the hospital’s management team, who reacted to the strike on condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to speak, said, “We are speaking to the striking doctors but it seems as if they are recalcitrant. They need to show understanding.
“We are optimistic that the meeting of Monday, April 18 will yield good result. Hopefully, by Monday or Tuesday, they should suspend the strike and return to work.”
In another development, pupils have been advised to take necessary proactive measures to prevent cancer and rape by remaining vigilant at all times.
The advice was given at a sensitisation workshop organised by Lasses Education and Healthcare Initiative for secondary school students in Ado Local Government Areas of Ekiti State. It was organised in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology.
A Health Promotion Specialist and Lifestyle Consultant, Dr. Abimbola Solanke, listed the symptoms of breast cancer to include breast lumps, rashes or discharge from the breast, retraction of pointed nipples, as well as shrinking, thickening and unusual change in the texture of the skin around the breast.
She advised female pupils to conduct regular self breast examination, particularly, after their monthly menstrual cycle.
Identifying fibroid and testicular cancer as the most common among young people, she stressed that early detection was the best way to tackle the deadly disease.
The Executive Director of LEHI, Mrs. Opeyemi Dapo-Alade, bemoaned the rising incidences of rape, which she attributed to obscene broadcasts, unemployment, indecent dressing, influence of alcohol and drugs among others.