Medical doctors in the employment of the Government of the State of Osun have been directed to resume duties or be ready to face sanctions in accordance with civil service rules.
This government position was disclosed today in Osogbo at a press conference addressed by the Chairman of the Special Committee on Health, Dr. Simeon Afolayan.
Dr Simeon Afolayan, who is a former Permanent secretary in the state stressed that it is only in a communist country that workers can be forced to work and pointed out that this is impossible in a democracy .
He then emphasised that since medical doctors and consultants in the Ministry of Health and local governments are taking the salaries being presently offered by the state government , medical doctors should be patriotic and be reasonable enough to agree with what other state workers numbering 39,000 are taking on monthly basis.
While admitting that doctors render essential services to the society, he pointed out that there is no single professional in the health sector that is not essential.
Dr Afolayan further pointed out that just as the State Government is committed to the welfare of doctors , it is also committed to the welfare of other professionals such as pharmacists, nurses, radiographers, cleaners and others.
Dr Afolayan, who pointed out that medical doctors’ monthly salary is four times what his/her counterpart in the ministries or agencies of government earn , they are in a better position to make sacrifices especially now that the state and the nation are facing economic challenges.
The Chairman of the Special Committee on Health also pointed out that medical doctors are duly represented on the committee of labour and government that sits on all revenues coming to the State Government and the committee decides on what goes to payment of salaries , what is dedicated to running of the government, what should be used for maintaining the welfare of the people and infrastructure .
He further revealed that it is the committee that recommended that the state’s resources be stretched a little bit, agreeing that it is better to have something all the time than have full salaries in a few months and then have a long spell of nothing.
He also made it known that doctors have been on different actions bordering on abandonment of duty for about eleven months out of which the State Government had graciously paid them six months whereas government shouldn’t have paid doctors who have indefinitely withdrawn their service since 2nd of April, 2015.
According to the Civil Service Regulations, workers who absent themselves from work beyond a certain limit are deemed to have resigned their appointment.
He then pointed out that this rule has taken effect and those who still want to be rendering their services have been given fresh opportunity stressing that government cannot be seen to be promoting and encouraging lawlessness by a group of less than 100 medical doctors.
Others at the press conference include the former Special Adviser to the State Governor on Hospitals Management Board, Dr Rafiu Isamotu,the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr Akinyinka Esho, the Permanent Secretary, Hospitals Management Board, Engr Olusegun Aduroja as well as the Director of Administration and Supplies, Mr Timothy Olawuni and Director of Medical Services, Dr Ebenezer Adepoju