JOHESU Opposes Upgrade Of LAUTECH Workers

resident doctors,Workers at the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology Teaching Hospital (LAUTECHTH) and the Joint Health Sector Unions (JOHESU) are at loggerheads over the upgrading of some members of staff of the hospital to their normal level in the service.

Channels Television gathered that JOHESU is opposing the upgrading of the workers, majority of whom are between Levels 3 and 4 to Levels 5 and 6, which was supposed to be their original level of employment.

Most affected in the case are indigenes of Osun state, who were recruited in 2012 with Levels 3 and 4.

The affected workers were upgraded to levels 5, 6 and 7 in 2013 and later demoted in 2015, following the recommendation of a panel set up by the government to investigate the recruitment of workers and salary wage bill of the hospital.

It was gathered that while the Osun State House of Assembly, through the House Committee on Health agreed to upgrade the workers, JOHESU objected to the move, describing it as hypocritical and insincere.

The objection was on the ground that some of the LAUTECH hospital workers have been due for promotion for over seven years without being promoted by the government.

The union accused the affected workers of attempting to get promotion through the back door by seeking politicians’ influence and allegedly compromising the House Committee on Health.

Also in a petition sent to Governor Rauf Aregbesola, the unions accused the House of Assembly of padding the LAUTECH hospital budget to accommodate the upgrading of the workers.

Dated February 3, 2017, the petition reads: “We are aware that there are plans to manipulate and carry out ‘padding’ by the State House of Assembly during the defence exercise of 2017 budget estimates for LAUTECH teaching hospital, Osogbo, as against what your excellency presented to the House.

“While we are strongly in support of any action (s) that may facilitate the re-instatement of our staff that were demoted last year, we, however, perceived the singling out of only that matter by the assembly among many other encompassing and more pressing issues as selfish, insincere and great injustice which will cause more damage than any good.

“It is our opinion that the State Assembly will earn more respect if its plans to review the Hospital’s 2017 budget estimates are holistically carried out without leaving out any of the under-listed encompassing and more important issues.”

Among the under listed issues in the petition are: “Promotion of all qualified staff who have been diligently serving the hospital, among whom are people that have been on the same level for more than five years;

“Full implementation of the Contributory Pension Scheme for all staff in the hospital with the government’s counterpart funding included in the budget. Immediate implementation of agreed medical policy for all staff in the hospital;

“Inclusion of funds in the budget estimates to cater for existing but not yet implemented circulars which includes but not limited to Call Duty Rectification Allowance, Specialist Allowance for other health professionals, and Enhanced Entry Point for Medical Laboratory Scientists and so on.”

The petition was signed by Chairmen and Secretaries of all the unions in the hospital.

Medical Director Arraigned Over Alleged Misappropriation Of Funds

Angela Uwakwem, imo, health workers, protestThe Medical Director of the Federal Medical Centre Owerri Mrs Angela Uwakwem on Tuesday, appeared before an Owerri high court, on an 18 count charge, bordering on financial misappropriation and embezzlement to the tune of 242 million Naira. 

The medical director was arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), following a petition by the (Joint Health Sector Union) JOHESU Of the Federal Medical Centre, Owerri.

During the first sitting of the case at the Owerri high court, counsel to EFCC, Barrister Mainforce Ekwu, alleged that according to the petition, Mrs Uwakwem, conspired with one Mr Emmanuel Ajayi, to inflate the price of medical equipment bought for the centre.

Barrister Ekwu also told the court that the Medical director should be remanded in prison, since the accused failed to appear before the court on October 10, 2016, after being served court summon, to which her lawyers confirmed receipt.

The defense counsel and lawyer to the Medical Director Chukwuma Ekomaru, S.A.N, however challenged the argument of the complainant.

He claimed that on October 10, his client was in court but after waiting for a while, there was an announcement that the court will not seat and they all dismissed.

Ekomaru, then urged the court to grant her client bail and also strike out the case for lack of merit.

Mrs Uwakwem on the other hand, pleaded not guilty to all the 18 count charge leveled against her.

In her Judgement, the presiding Judge, Justice Florence Duruoha-Igwe, granted the accused bail on grounds that she did not jump bail.

Also she said for her to attend further proceedings from her home, she would have to present two sureties to the court, who are resident in Owerri with a landed property and the sum of one million Naira.

While the counsel to EFCC refused to speak to journalists, Mrs Uwakwem’s consel, Ekomaru, told journalists that the case lacked merit as the union has failed in all ramifications since they refused to adhere to the constitution of Nigeria.

“It is a shame that the Union in FMC could go this far to tarnish the image of a woman who has done well for the Centre,” he expressed.

Joint Health Union Shuts Down Hospital In Port Harcourt

Health sectorThe Joint Health Sector Union of the the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital has threatened to withdraw their services and shut down operations at the hospital.

The doctors on Friday staged a protest in Rivers State to kick start an indefinite strike to press home their demands.

They, however, said that they could withdraw their plans if the management heeds their request of regularising their grade level promotions and salaries as and when due.

The Chief Medical Director of the hospital, Professor Aaron Ojule, noted that the demands of the protesters were before the Federal Ministry of Health.

Some of the health professionals have also asked that the issues be resolved quickly for the good of patients at the hospital.

Oshiomhole Increases Health Workers’ Salaries

OshiomholeEdo State Governor, Adams Oshiomhole, has increased the salaries of health workers in the state by five per cent

The Governor made the pronouncement on Friday when he invited members of the Joint Health Workers’ Union to the Edo State Government House.

Governor Oshiomhole said that though, the state capacity to pay salaries has not increased, the government decided on the increment of workers’ salaries because of the harsh economic realities.

Chairman of the Joint Health Sector Union (JOHESU), Agbonlahor Osaretin, pledged the workers’ commitment to duty in line with the motivation received.

Ogun State Health Sector Union Suspends Strike

Ogun State health WorkersThe Joint Health Sector Union (JOHESU) in Ogun State have suspended their four-week old industrial action which had paralysed activities at the Federal Medical Centre, Idi Aba, Abeokuta.

The health workers are requesting for improved condition of service.

A visit to the medical centre in the state capital revealed that members of the union are back at their various duty posts with patients receiving medical attention.

The Chairman of the Senior Staff Association in Abeokuta Federal Medical Centre, Mr Samuel Idowu, said the suspension of the industrial action became imperative in view of positive steps being taken by the hospital management aimed at resolving the impasse.

He, however, asked members of the union to rededicate themselves for quick service delivery to the public, whom he stressed looked towards the hospital for their medical attention.

FMC Owo Staff Protest Kidnap Of Colleague

FMC Owo: Staff Protest Kidnap Of ColleagueStaff of the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Owo in Ondo State have staged a peaceful protest over the abduction of one of their members.

The workers, under the aegis of the Joint Health Sector Union (JOHESU), demanded the immediate and unconditional release of a Pharmacist, Mrs Queen Adeyeye, who was kidnapped last Saturday in the Southwest Nigerian state.

The aggrieved workers abandoned their duty posts to stage the protest, carrying placards to express their demand.

The woman, said to be a widow, was kidnapped while returning home from a vigil on that fateful day.

The Chairman of JOHESU, FMC, Owo, Joseph Omoniyi as well as other numbers threatened to down tool indefinitely if their colleague was not released.

They appealed to the government and well-meaning Nigerians to come to the aid of workers of the medical centre, saying their lives were no longer safe.