The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) in Abia has expressed dismay at the failure of the Abia government to pay salary arrears owed to doctors who have been on strike in the last 87 days.
Members of the Abia chapter of the NMA embarked on strike on December 8, 2022, to demand payment of salary arrears owed to doctors in the service of the state government.
“It is instructive to note the uneven arrangement in payment of salaries for reasons explainable only by the Abia government.
“On the face value, it looks more as an effort to short-change workers and write off some of their unpaid salaries,’’ the association stated.
The chairman, Isaiah Abali, and secretary, Daniel Ekeleme, stated on Saturday in Umuahia that doctors at Abia State University Teaching Hospital (ABSUTH) were owed 24 months’ salaries.
They added that those at the Hospital Management Board (HMB) were owed 14 months’ salaries and described the situation as painful.
“Doctors in Abia embarked on an indefinite strike to press home their demand over the sad and intractable issue of non-payment of their monthly salaries.
“It is a painful reminder of the wickedness of man to man.
“Doctors working at ABSUTH are owed salaries from May to December 2019, from January to June and from September to December 2020.
“They are also owed salaries from September to December 2022 and January and February in 2023.
“Doctors at the HMB are owed from May to December in 2021, from September to December in 2022 and for January and February in 2023.”
The association appealed to the state government to expedite action in clearing the salary arrears, stressing that “a worker deserves his wages.’’