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Disregard JOHESU’s industrial action threat on bill, CNP urges senate

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Segun Ayinde, Abeokuta

The College of Nigerian Pathologists, CNP, on Tuesday, urged the senate committee on health to disregard the industrial action threat by the Joint Health Sector Union and proceed with the passage of the Medical and Dental Practitioners’ Repeal and Re-enactment Bill, 2020, to re-enact the Act in order to bring it in line with the current international best practices.

Kicking against the threat by JOHESU to embark on the strike to protest against the re-enactment of the old and outdated Bill, CNP said the planned demonstration was an attempt by the union to blackmail the senate committee on health.

Its president, Professor Philip O. Olatunji, speaking at a press conference at the Nigerian Union of Journalists Secretariat in Abeokuta, the Ogun state capital, described the threat by JOHESU on the industrial action as a false and malicious action that would never be tolerated.

Olatunji accused JOHESU of assembling students and rented crowds including commercial demonstrators armed with various flags, banners and placards to be used for the planned strike, urging well-meaning Nigerians and the general public to disregard their statement on the action.

According to him the Bill seeks to regulate the practice of medicine, both at basic and specialist level, and has nothing whatsoever to do with the profession represented by JOHESU, wondering why the union should take such interest of the Bill seriously by issuing a threat to embark on a strike.

The professor, who said that the passage of the Bill would reduce the sources of conflicts that have engender litigations and rendered the laboratories crisis-laden for 17 years, urged JOHESU to have a rethink on the protest and stop accusing the senate of not giving them a fair hearing on the matter.

He said “The College of Nigeria Pathologist had noted with dismay the unwarranted threat of industrial action issued by the Joint Health Sector Union (JOHESU) through a press conference on Thursday, 4, February, 2021 in response to the public hearing particularly on the Medical and Dental Practitioners’ Repeal and Re-enactment Bill, 2020.”

“We urged the Senate and the National Assembly to proceed with the passage of the Bill to re-enact an old and outdated Act to bring it in line with the current international best practices and reduce the sources of conflict that have engendered needles litigations and rendered our laboratories crises-laden over the last 17 years”

“It is sad that the same people who were physically present at the public hearing and made both oral and written presentations without let or hindrances could turn round frivolously and claim that the senate committee on health did not give them a fair hearing.”

“This attempt to blackmail the senate on committee on Health and by extension the whole senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and bring it into disrepute must not be tolerated, otherwise it will become the norm in the same way” turn by turn” strike action have been the hall mark of the healthcare environment by the actions of the same people” he added

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