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Doctors Agree To Sign MOU To End Strike



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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BREAKING:DSS Confirms Arresting, Detainting Suspended CBN Governor Emefiele



BREAKING: Old Naira Notes Deadline Stays - Emefiele
Suspended CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele

Hours after denying that the suspended Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, was in its custody, the Department of State Services (DSS) on Saturday said that it had arrested and detained him.

“The Department of State Services (DSS) hereby confirms that Mr Godwin Emefiele, the suspended Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), is now in its custody for some investigative reasons,” Peter Afunanya, the spokesperson for the agency, said in a press statement .

There were speculations Friday night that the SSS arrested Emefiele shortly after he was suspended. But the law enforcement agency tweeted Saturday morning, saying the top banker was not in its custody.

It is unclear why the SSS is holding the embattled official. But the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation said Friday that his office, the CBN, was under investigation.

The SSS and Emefiele have had a turbulent relationship recently. Last year, the agency accused the governor of a barrage of offences.

The SSS secretly requested a court order in December to arrest him on allegations of “financing terrorism, fraudulent activities, and economic crimes of national security dimension.”

This request was, however, rejected by the Federal High Court in Abuja because the secret security unit failed to present sufficient evidence to justify issuing an arrest warrant against Emefiele.

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I Removed Subsidy To Stop Nigeria From Playing Father Christmas – Tinubu



Senator Withdraws Support For Tinubu Over Choice Of Muslim Running Mate
President Bola Tinubu

President Bola Tinubu has offered insight into why he declared the removal of petroleum subsidy during his inauguration on May 29,2023.

According to Tinubu, a crucial reason for the removal was to stop Nigeria from continuing to play the role of a Father Christmas to neighbouring African countries by providing them subsidised petrol.

The president, who was speaking on Friday at an interactive session with select Nigerian traditional rulers, under the auspices of the National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria (NCTRN), at the State House, Abuja, described the subsidy as an elephant that could have collapsed the country “because it is struggling to pay salaries.”

Tinubu told the traditional leaders: “I am grateful that you are paying attention to what I have been doing. You have paid attention to the subsidy removal. Why should we in good heart and sense, feed smugglers and be Father Christmas to neighbouring countries, even though they say not every day is Christmas? The elephant that was going to bring Nigeria to its knees is the subsidy; a country that cannot pay salaries. I think we did the right thing.”

Tinubu appealed to the traditional leaders to persuade Nigerians to have faith in the removal of subsidy, promising that the pump prices of fuel would eventually come down.

The president reiterated his pledge to Nigerians to prioritise security until every Nigerian “goes to sleep with their two eyes closed.”

According to him, the unity and togetherness of the country cannot be compromised, saying every region of the country would get what it is due.

Condemning crude oil theft in the Niger Delta region “by a tiny percentage of the population,” President Tinubu said it was counterproductive to the growth of the economy.

He said: “We need to tame those involved in this sabotage and we will work as hard as possible to ensure that the diversity of this country is used for its prosperity, growth and stability.”

Tinubu stressed that with the campaigns and elections over, he is primed for governance, and his government has already signed a law that extends the retirement age of judicial officers from 65 to 70 years, while also addressing pension reforms. Also speaking on electricity, President Tinubu said a constitutional amendment signed into law now allows the nation’s 36 States to generate electricity.

He said: “That’s devolution of power and that should be our contribution to the developmental projects you are looking for and we will continue in ways that will help our people.”

He assured the traditional rulers in the country that his administration would run an open-door policy that is ready to listen to the yearnings of Nigerians toward transforming the country’s rich potential to reality.

Tinubu said: “We are all ears. We are ready to listen at any given time. I promise you an open-door policy and that is the way I will go.That open-door policy is for you to call me and send to me at any given time any concern that you might have.

“We may not have it right 100 percent of the time but we must get it right 90 percent of the time for this country”.

Responding to issues raised by the monarchs on challenges facing the country, President Tinubu assured them, saying “worry not because the country is in good hands,” adding that his administration is very conscious of the expectations of Nigerians.While acknowledging concerns on the need for critical infrastructure in different parts of the country, the President assured that any road block in the way of the progress of the Nigerian people would be removed by his government.

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BREAKING:Tinubu Suspends Emefiele As CBN Governo



CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele

President Bola Tinubu on Friday suspended Godwin Emefiele as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor.

The Director of Information, Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation Willie Bassey on Friday declared in a statement: “President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has suspended the Central Bank Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, CFR, from office with immediate effect.

“This is sequel to the ongoing investigation of his office and the planned reforms in the financial sector of the economy.

“Mr Emefiele has been directed to immediately hand over the affairs of his office to the Deputy Governor (Operations Directorate), who will act as the Central Bank Governor pending the conclusion of the investigation and the reforms.”

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