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Doctors reject FG’s N25,000 allowance and 25% salary increase

The Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) has rejected the Federal Government’s 25% increase to the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure.

The decision was made during the association’s National Executive Council (NEC) meeting in Lagos, and a communique was issued on Saturday, July 29, with signatures from the association’s president, Orji Emeka Innocent, secretary-general, Chikezie Kelechi, and publicity and social secretary, Umar Musa.

Doctors insist on earlier demands. 

The doctors insist on their original demand, which is the full restoration of the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure (CMSS) to its value at the time of its approval in 2009.

The communique expressed strong disapproval of the 25% increment in the basic salary of doctors and the accoutrement allowance calling it “paltry”. 

The statement reads, “NEC vehemently rejects the paltry 25 per cent increment in the basic salary of doctors, as well as the accoutrement allowance,” It went further to insist they stand on their earlier demands “for full restoration of the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure to its right value as at the time of the approval of the structure in 2009,” 

Strike continues

Orji emphasized that the strike would continue until the government demonstrates significant progress in addressing the association’s demands, as outlined in the earlier ultimatum.

The doctors’ demands encompass the immediate payment of the 2023 Medical Residency Training Fund (MRTF), concrete measures for the upward review of the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure (CONMESS), and settlement of all salary arrears owed to its members since 2015.

What you should know 

Earlier in the week, resident Doctors across the country embarked on an indefinite strike after the expiration of their two weeks warning strike on July 19.  

The demands of the doctors include payment of arrears dating back to 2014,2015, and 2016; an upward review of the consolidated salary structure for medical doctors to reflect changes in exchange rate and inflation since 2014 amongst others.

To placate the doctors, the Federal government, through the office of the National Salary and Wages Commission, offered an N25,000 accoutrement allowance for medical and dental practitioners in the country.

The federal government also increased the salary of medical doctors by 25% for those in CONMESS grades 1 to 6 and 35% for those in CONMESS grade 7.  

In a letter from the FG, it states the cost of the increase will be from the overhead budget and will be effective from June 1, 2023.