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Medical, Dental Consultants Issue 21-Day Ultimatum to Government Amidst Looming Strike Threat

The specter of a potential industrial standoff looms large as the Medical and Dental Consultants Association of Nigeria (MDCAN) issues a stern 21-day ultimatum to the Federal Government, laying out clear demands that must be met to avert possible unrest.

This resolute stance was articulated in a communique bearing the signatures of Victor Makanjuola, the President of MDCAN, and Yemi Raji, the Secretary-General of MDCAN. The document, released following a virtual assembly of the National Executive Council, amplifies the urgency of the situation.

The crux of the matter centers around the government’s inability to resolve ongoing conflicts with the National Association of Resident Doctors, thereby perpetuating obstacles to Nigerians’ access to quality healthcare.

The council’s proclamation highlights a critical oversight, one that has sparked mounting discontent among clinical lecturers, also known as Honorary Consultants. A grievous lapse occurred in the administration of an upward review, leading to the exclusion of these lecturers from the intended benefits. An egregious error in commencement dates further exacerbated the situation, as the new circular’s initiation was slated for January 1, 2023, instead of the agreed-upon June 1, 2023.

The communique asserts the council’s expectation for a swift rectification of this misstep. It contends that the recent revision of CONMESS (Consolidated Medical Salary Structure) failed to factor in the reverberations of fuel subsidy removal and the staggering inflation that has besieged Nigeria’s socioeconomic sphere over the past three months.

Expressing a steadfast commitment to constructive engagement, the medical practitioners underscored their ongoing negotiation with the National Salaries Incomes and Wages Commission, spanning a period of more than two years. This sustained effort aimed to address the remuneration shortfalls afflicting Clinical Lecturers (Honorary Consultants). However, the resolution of this pressing issue remains elusive within the halls of the Federal Government.

The consultants have now embarked on a dual-front quest. They demand a comprehensive review of the revised CONMESS circular, urging the issuance of a new iteration that aligns with the agreed-upon percentage for Basic Salary and allowances – a revision that notably excludes hazard allowances.

As the clock ticks, the ball is squarely in the government’s court. The MDCAN’s unequivocal ultimatum echoes with the collective voice of medical and dental consultants across Nigeria, urging swift action to mend the fissures that threaten to disrupt the country’s healthcare landscape

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