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Doctors Agree To Sign MOU To End Strike

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Doctors Agree To Sign MOU To End Strike

The strike by resident doctors may soon end going by indications from the Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors NARD).

On Wednesday, the doctors agreed to sign a Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, with the Federal Government so as to suspend the strike they embarked on since August 2.

The association took the position at the resumed proceedings in the suit the Federal Government instituted against them at the National Industrial Court(NIC) in Abuja.

FG had threatened to invoke the no-work-no-pay policy against resident doctors in the country, following their refusal to return to their duty posts over alleged irregular payment of their salaries.

However, the court, in a ruling on August 23, ordered NARD, in Federal Ministry of Health and FG to suspend all forms of hostilities till Friday which it slated to hear the suit querying the legality of the strike action.

Justice John Targema made the order after he heard an ex-parte application that was brought against the striking doctors by FG.

FG had in the application, prayed the court to grant two interim injunctions against members of NARD in all the states of the federation, pending the determination of the suit marked NICN/ABJ/197/2021.

It specifically applied for: “An order of interlocutory injunction restraining members of the Defendant/Respondent in all states of the federation from further continuing with the industrial action embarked on the 2nd day of August 2021, contrary to section 41 of the Trade Dispute Act, pending the termination of the substantive suit.”

READ ALSO: Governors To Meet On Doctors Strike, PIA, Others

As well as, “An order of interlocutory injunction compelling all members of the Defendant/Respondent in all states of the federation to suspend the said industrial action commenced on the 2nd August 2021 and resume work immediately pending the determination of the substantive suit”.

FG contended that resident doctors embarked on the strike action, without proper notice as provided by the extant laws.

It argued that members of NARD, being of “essential services providers”, were prohibited by law from embarking on strike.

“The continued and sustained industrial action by the Defendant/Respondent is contrary to public policy and equally endangers the lives of the citizenry,” it added

Meanwhile, when the matter resumed on Wednesday, government lawyer, Tochukwu Maduka, disclosed that he had also initiated contempt proceedings against NARD for the refusal of its members to suspend the strike.

“Despite the order of this court that all hostilities be suspended, the defendants who render essential services have refused to call off the strike,” he submitted.

On in his part, counsel to the doctors, Mr Femi Falana, SAN, said he filed processes to ensure the stay of execution of the court’s order.

Though Falana challenged the jurisdiction of the NIC to hear the case, he said there was the need for all the parties to return to the negotiation table, in line with order of the court for suspension of hostilities.

“We can resume today or even tomorrow if a decision is reached,” Falana added.

At this juncture, Justice Bashir Alkali, who presided over the matter on Wednesday, okayed a stand down, even as the disputing parties held a brief meeting within the courtroom, to reach a consensus.

Speaking with journalists at the end of the proceedings, counsel to FG disclosed that the resident doctors, through their lawyer, said they were ready to suspend the strike action.

“Counsel for the resident doctors approached us on behalf of his clients, indicating that they want the matter to be settled and that they are prepared to go back to work,” Maduka added.

READ ALSO: Doctors’ Strike Continues As NARD, Reps Fail To Reach Peace Deal

Likewise, Falana, SAN, in his reaction, said: “We had consultations on both sides with our clients and with the lawyers of the government and we have agreed to come back on Friday to report the efforts we have made.

“There is an agreement that was not signed by our client. We have studied the agreement and we have advised our client that since there is a clause in it that nobody shall be penalized or sanctioned for participating in the industrial action.

“We believe that there should be no inhibition in signing the agreement, trusting that there would be good faith on the path of the government so that we can put this matter behind us”, he added.

Meantime, the matter was adjourned till Friday for possible report of settlement.

“Both parties should try and shift grounds so that the country can move forward,” Justice Alkali implored the parties.

 

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Activist Professor Tunde Fatunde Dies

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Activist Professor Tunde Fatunde Dies

A Professor of French Language in the Faculty of Arts, Lagos State University(LASU), Prof. Tunde Fatunde, is dead.

The LASU branch of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) disclosed that Fatunde died on Thursday.

He was 70 years old. LASU-ASUU did not state the cause of death.

Fatunde was a renowned activist and scholar. He was not just a teacher of the French language, he was also a newspaper columnist and dramatist.

He was born on 11 December 1951 in Makurdi, Benue state. He was married to Oluyemisi Jokotade Olaopa and both have several children.

READ ALSO: South African Anti-apartheid Icon Desmond Tutu Dies At 90

Fatunde began his education at St Paul’s Primary School, Gbongan, Osun State, 1956-62; Gbogan/Ode Omu Anglican Grammar School, Gbongan, Osun State, 1963-67; Comprehensive High School, Aiyetoro. Ogun State, 1968- 69.

Thereafter, he went to L’lnstitute DeTouraine, Tours, France, 1971-72; University oflbadan, Ibadan, Oyo State, 1971-75; Universite de Bordeauz III. Bordeaux, France 1972-77; Universite de Bordeau 111, Bordeaux, France, 1977-80.

Fatunde returned to Nigeria to assume lectureship at University of Benin, Benin City in 1983.

In between his academic career, Fatunde created time for his journalistic passion, with links with many media houses, both in Nigeria and abroad.

He published several books, such as No Food. No Country, Water no get Enemy and a collection of his plays: No More Oil Boom.

He was until his death, a professor of French Language in the Faculty of Arts at LASU.

Friends and fellow activists paid tributes on Friday morning.

Richard Akinola, a veteran journalist wrote: “What a sad loss of a friend and comrade, Professor Tunde Fatunde. Easy going, unassuming and principled. Rest well brother”.

Henry Hunjo, a lecturer at LASU wrote: “Travel well, Prof Tunde Fatunde. You fought on all fronts of life and won many of these battles but you couldn’t conquer the eternal sleep, death.

“It’s the most assured reality of human experiences. It’s perfect in bringing finality to all things. I wish I could write a dirge but with a heavy heart, I wish you a joyous eternal sleep. You’ve completed your cycle. Adieu, Prof”.

 

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Why GOFAMINT General Overseer Demoted His Deputy

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Why GOFAMINT General Overseer Demoted His Deputy

The General Overseer of the Gospel Faith Mission International (GOFAMINT), Pastor Elijah O. Abina, has demoted his deputy.

Before his demotion, Pastor Emmanuel Oluwayemi was the successor-designate to Abina.

In a statement by GOFAMINT spokesperson Pastor Taiwo on January 26, Abina disclosed that Pastor Emmanuel Oluwayemi would no longer serve as the Deputy General Overseer (DGO).

Olwayemi has been relegated to an Assistant General Overseer (AGO) “in order to stem the tide of this unfortunate drift in the system,” the statement reads.

“The issue concerning Pastor Oluwayemi has been long on my table, spanning a space of about five years. His activities since he came to the office have had a very negative effect on the church,” Abina said.

READ ALSO: Dunamis Church Removes Sammie Okposo From Ministers’ List

“Way back in 2018, I noticed that the leadership style he brought to the office of the Deputy General Overseer was diametrically opposed to the servant-leadership style of Jesus Christ which this church is used to.

“This has led to division in the church, which since inception, has been one united family. I raised this issue in a joint meeting of the Executive Council and the Advisory Board on August 1, 2019, during which I emphatically stated that I could no longer work with him as my deputy, and that I was convinced that he was not going to be my successor for the reason of the said attitude.

“I have stated repeatedly that this is absolutely not a personal issue, but something that affects the well-being of the church.

“As a matter of fact, I know him to be very generous and charismatic but, he lacks the character of a servant-leader, and I have told him on many occasions that charisma without character leads to crisis.

“Part of his character defects is his desperate pursuit of the office of the G.O. This desperation is clearly obvious in his usual manner of taking official matters of the church to the public in order to whip up sentiments in his favour and to create resentment or disaffection for the church authority.

“All these events are unprecedented in the sixty-six year history of this church.”

 

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PDP To Conclude Lagos Congress Feb 19

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PDP To Conclude Lagos Congress Feb 19

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) will conclude its outstanding congress to elect new state executive committee members in Lagos on February 19.

The National Working Committee (NWC) of the party disclosed this in a statement by its National Organising Secretary, Umar Bature, on Thursday in Abuja.

READ ALSO: Ekiti 2022: Oyebanji Declared Winner Of APC Primary Election As Seven Contestants Protest

According to the statement, the NWC also scheduled a crucial meeting with Lagos stakeholders on February 7 at its zonal headquarters, Ibadan.

It added that the NWC would continue to update stakeholders on any development in that regard.

(NAN)

 

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