The Medical and Dental Consultants Association of Nigeria has set a unique 21-day timeframe for the Federal Government to meet its demands, or else face the possibility of labor unrest.
This announcement was made by MDCAN following an extraordinary virtual National Executive Council meeting held on Tuesday. The statement was jointly signed by Dr. Victor Makanjuola, the association’s president, and Dr. Yemi Raji, the secretary general.
In the statement, MDCAN expressed disappointment over the non-implementation of the jointly agreed-upon upward review of the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure (CONMESS) and the introduction of the Accoutrement allowance in collaboration with the Nigerian Medical Association. The association noted that the circular released only accounted for a percentage increase in the basic salary, without extending it to all allowances except hazard allowance.
The issued statement stated that…
“This error has resulted in the complete exclusion of the clinical lecturers (Honorary Consultants) from benefitting from the upward review. The commencement date for the new circular was agreed to be January 1, 2023, rather than June 1, 2023.
“We believe this error will be corrected without delay. The recent upward review of CONMESS did not take into consideration the consequences of the fuel subsidy removal and exponential inflation that has pervaded our socio-economic space in the past three months.
“Despite our association’s decision to keep faith with the engagement and negotiations with the National Salaries Incomes and Wages Commission for more than two years regarding the correction of the shortfalls in remuneration for Clinical Lecturers (Honorary Consultants), the issue is yet to be conclusively addressed by the Federal Government,” it noted.
The council observed a lack of universal implementation of the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure (CONMESS) across all medical and dental doctors, regardless of their respective government agencies of employment.
Furthermore, the council criticized the government for not resolving the ongoing conflicts with the National Association of Resident Doctors, which has had adverse effects on Nigerians’ access to healthcare and has contributed to the kidnapping of doctors in the country.
In response, the consultants are requesting an immediate reevaluation of the recently revised CONMESS circular. They urge the issuance of a new circular that accurately incorporates the agreed-upon percentage increase for both the Basic Salary and other allowances, with the exception of hazard allowance.
The consultants emphasize that this review will ensure that clinical lecturers also reap the benefits of the upward salary adjustment.
Other demands include, “A call for the correction of the error of commencement of the implementation of the upward review of CONMESS from June 1, 2023, to January 1, 2023.
“The upward review of the CONMESS should take into consideration the impacts of the fuel subsidy removal and the high inflationary trend that is currently being experienced. A demand for the immediate implementation and circularisation of the agreed modalities for correcting the shortfalls in remunerations of Clinical Lecturers (Honorary Consultants). An appeal for the universal applicability of CONMESS to all medical and dental doctors, particularly those in public universities.
“The attention of the government is once again called to the impact of brain drain in the health sector, which is contributing to burnout among our members and inadequate healthcare workforce to cater to the health of Nigerians. We, therefore, demand the immediate implementation of the upward review of age retirement to 70 years for Consultants and 65 years for other Health workers, as an immediate measure to bridge the ongoing massive brain drain.
“The NEC hopes that all these issues will be satisfactorily resolved within the next 21 days, failing which it can no longer guarantee the present relative industrial harmony within the government hospitals and our medical schools”, it said.