Nigeria’s former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo said it is unethical for doctors to go on strike at the expense of patients.
He said doctors must always consider the conditions of their patients before embarking on strikes.
Obasanjo, who spoke at the opening ceremony of the National Association of Government General Medical and Dental Practitioners (NAGGMD), held at the Doctor’s House, Lukosi, Abeokuta, on Friday, urged the practitioners to take patients’ conditions more paramount in their quest for better welfare.
Obasanjo, in a release by his Special Assistant, Media, Kehinde Akinyemi, added: “a major issue that I always want to talk about whenever I am in your midst, which I told you when you came visiting is the issue of going on strike anytime you want to show your displeasure particularly, government doctors.
“My position is that since the care for your patient is a major ethical issue of your profession, abandoning them to go on strike is even more unethical. You should fashion another way to show your displeasure and not doing so at the expense of your patients.”
The former President, while reacting to the theme of the conference, which was “The Importance of Supply Chain Management in Health Care System Straightening” called for the resuscitation of the old central medical store system in order to boost availability of drugs in the country.
“We used to have something like that in the past during the Western region. I don’t know whether we still have it. If we don’t, this is time to return it or have something near it, which will bring efficiency and affordability to our drug chain system.”
The Secretary to the State Governor (SSG), Mr. Tokunbo Talabi who represented the governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun corroborated Obasanjo’s call for caution to the country’s medical practitioners over strike issue.
According to him, “I want you to look into what Baba Obasanjo has said on this issue of strike. You can get alternative for Taxi drivers if they decide to go on strike, yes, we have Okada riders, but, this is not so for you. God made you so special to save lives and you should live up to the expectation. We can device other ways to save these lives it is very important.”
The Ogun State chairman of NAGGMD, Dr. Olufemi Odusote in his welcome address hinted that the theme for the 2019 National Executive Council (NEC) meeting, “The Importance of Supply Chain Management in Health Care System Straightening” became imperative in view of the health challenges, which included manpower, brain drain, and general welfare of members and security challenges have made doctors vulnerable.