ABUJA—Health workers in the country Sunday condemned the reconstitution of Boards of Federal Teaching Hospitals. The Boards were reconstituted a fortnight ago in Abuja by Minister of Health, Prof Onyebuchi Chukwu, to provide oversight function on the management of hospitals.
The workers, whose condemnation came under the aegis of Association of Medial Laboratory Scientists of Nigeria (AMLSN); Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN); National Association of Nigerian Nurses and Midwives (NANNM); Association of Radiographers of Nigeria (ARN); Nigerian Society of Physiotherapy (NSP); Health Information Managers Association of Nigeria (HIMAN), decried the non-inclusion of its members on the boards.
Speaking on behalf of the group, President of AMLSN, Dr Godswill Okara, said: “Our representatives have been completely excluded from the membership of the Boards of all the fifteen federal Teaching Hospitals in Nigeria contrary to the clear provisions of the enabling law.
“The law in its wisdom seeks to ensure a sense of belonging and balance through a fair representation in the Management Boards of these hospitals where policy decisions on staff and services are taken.
“This brazen act of exclusion smacks of malice. We call on all men and women of good conscience to lend their voice to the call on the Honourable Minister of Health to uphold and comply with the letter and spirit of the enabling law.”
Okara alleged tthat he Minister’s action contradicted legal provision for the reconstitution of the Boards in the country, adding that the action would further exacerbate growing crises in the sector if not reversed.
He added that following the announcement by the Ministry to inaugurate the Boards a few days before the inauguration, an appeal was made through the workers’ counsel for the postponement of the exercise to ensure proper and full compliance with the enabling law.
“It is most unfortunate development that the Honourable Minister refused to accede to this legitimate demand; whereas, he effected the representation of the Nigerian Medical Association in all the Boards of the hospitals, an obvious case of favouritism of his colleagues,” Okara said.
He noted that healthcare delivery was a multi-professional and multi-disciplinary endeavour that involved the contribution of all professionals and workers in the system. He, therefore, called on President Goodluck Jonathan to direct the Minister of Health to respect and comply fully with the extant law.