Twitter is swirling and fuming like a raging storm.
Well maybe not all of Twitter, but Nigerian doctors on Twitter are expressing their displeasure over a new “Building levy” they are made to pay before their 2019 License will be processed.
The new Nigerian Medical Association Building Levy is N20,000. It is being backed by the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria. Based on the information on the MDCN website, all doctors are expected to pay the levy of N20,000.
The MDCN portal, where license registration and renewal is done, would only acknowledge your license renewal after the payment of the compulsory levy.
The Origin of the NMA Building Levy?
The levy sprung out of ‘no-where’!!!
Doctors only got to know of this new fee when they attempted registering for a new license. A pop-up notification on the MDCN website announces all doctors would have to part with some more money for an ‘invisible’ building project.
Attempts have been made to reach out to the NMA National executive for some explanation, but there has been no response from them yet.
Are there divisions among the ranks!
The structure of the Nigerian Medical Association allows for state chapters with her executives, who form part of the National Executive Council. However, some state chapters have denied knowledge of any building levies. The levy took everybody by surprise, and it may be a costly mistake for the NEC Leadership.
Here is an example of a message sent to all members of the NMA Zamfara on the issue;
Dear members of our great profession.
We have received complains from our members who tried to register for the renewal of their annual practicing license of the introduction of indemnity insurance and NMA building levy on the remita page.
We want to categorically inform our members that none of these levies were to the best of our knowledge approved by the NEC and as such cannot be imposed on our doctors.
While trying to get clarification from the NOC, we urged our members to temporize payment for now until after Uyo NEC coming up in two weeks time.
Is a Revolution Imminent? – Social Media Speaks
Social media was the first point of call for the initial doctors who discovered the intention of the Nigerian Medical Association. Under the hashtag #StopNMA20KBuildingLevy, the number of those who want the Building Levy scrapped keep increasing.
No comment yet from the leaders, but they cannot keep quiet for so long. Why?
Doctors may decide to take laws into their hands and reject the current NMA Leadership. Already many doctors feel that the Nigerian Medical Association do not directly affect their lives. Some doctors think little about the association insisting that the NMA only exists to extort money from doctors. Despite the poor pay/remuneration for doctors in the country, the NMA wants to siphon the little cash left!!!
Tension is simply too high with this new levy.
This is a problem of Poor Communication and timing!!!… MDCN/NMA you have erred
It is best the MDCN and NMA retract a few steps and do the right thing. In my opinion, it is an error on the part of NMA to assume that doctors would understand their plans and play (or pay) along.
With no prior notice to this levy and no explanation as to what the levy is all about, doctors seem ready to have none of it.
The timing of introducing a levy is poor and seems like an ambush. If the announcement was done a few months ago, there would be grumblings but not at this present scale and magnitude
There are still a lot of unanswered questions for the NMA National Leadership to answer before doctors will buy into your idea of a levy.
Here is a summary of the important questions NMA have to answer as soon as possible;
Let us do the maths;
Each person is to pay N20,000 for the Building Levy. Note that this excludes the regular N10,000 for License fees.
N20,000 * 40,000 = N800,000,000
So about N800million will be realized when all 40,000 doctors pay the new levy.
The question is, WHAT KIND OF BUILDING PROJECT ARE DOCTORS PLANNING OF DOING WITH SUCH HUMONGOUS AMOUNT?
My candid advice;
We deserve to know the truth…
Call off the payment of the Building Levy for now. This is just about the only logical step that would make sense!!!