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FG Urges Resident Doctors To Suspend Strike

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The Federal Government yesterday, urged the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), to suspend its ongoing industrial action across the country.
Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, said this in a statement signed by Mr Charles Akpan, Deputy Director, Head, Press and Public Relations in Abuja.
Ngige said that it was imperative for NARD to suspend the industrial action as government had already addressed six out of the eight demands listed by the association.
He said government will reconvene a conciliation meeting between NARD and Federal Ministries of Health, and Finance, Budget and National Planning on Wednesday at the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment to avert the ongoing strike.
According to Ngige, by Labour Laws and International Labour Organisation (ILO) Conventions, when issues are being conciliated, all parties are enjoined not to employ arm-twisting methods to intimidate or foist a state of helplessness on the other party; in this case, your employers, the Federal Ministry of Health.
He, therefore, appealed to NARD to respect the country’s laws and suspend its industrial action, while noting that a high percentage of the Association’s demands had already been addressed.
“This is coupled with the existence of a pending case in the National Industrial Court of Nigeria (NICN) instituted by two Civil Society groups against NARD, the Attorney -General of the Federation, and the Ministers of Health, and Labour and Employment”, he said.
“NARD had no reason to embark on an industrial action, “he said.
He also stated that the groups, Citizens Advocacy for Social Rights (CASER) and Association of Women in Trading and Agriculture (AWITA), had also asked for an interlocutory injunction against further strike by NARD.
He added that all the parties had already appeared and exchanged court processes.
Ngige  said that in spite of lean resources occasioned by the effect of COVID-19 on oil output, the federal government had already spent N20 billion on the Special Hazard and Inducement Allowances for Medical and Health Workers for April, May and June 2020, with a few outstanding payments to some health workers for June 2020.
He also said that the federal government has expended N9.3 billion as premium for Group Life Insurance for Medical and Health workers, as well as for all civil and public servants in federal organisations that are Treasury funded, to run from March  2020 to March 2021.
He disclosed that the federal fovernment have appropriated the sum of N4 billion in the Special Intervention COVID-19, while N500 billion in 2020 appropriation for the funding of Medical Residency Training and intended to do same in the ongoing 2021 Budget.
The minister further stated that N4 billion has been processed for payment.
Ngige also said that the matter between NARD and the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital has been resolved, while the resolution of the issue of State Governments not addressing the consequential adjustment to the new minimum wage, and low patronage of Residency programme were ongoing.
He said plans were on for the conciliation meeting between NARD and Federal Ministries of Health, and Finance, Budget and National Planning to be held on Wednesday at the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment.(NAN)

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PDP Working On Resolving Crisis With Wike -Baraje

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A former Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Abubakar Baraje, has said the party was following due process in the resolution of its post-convention crises, assuring that Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyeson Wike, remains a prominent member of the party.
He said although he was aware that Wike has been meeting and inviting members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), the governor has not run afoul of the rules or gone out of his bounds.
Baraje said Wike, who he described as hard-working is known for inviting people outside his party for project commissioning to set example for healthy politics.
He made these known, last Wednesday in The Morning Show on Arise News Television, and urged Nigerians to be patient as the party was not leaving anything undone in the resolution of its internal problems.
Baraje said calls for the resignation of PDP National Chairman, Dr Iyorchia Ayu were not misplaced as the party has a tradition of zoning offices between the North and South regions.
“The party has rules and regulations. We will keep our traditions. Wherever we resolve the issue, it will be in the party’s interest. The processes are on.
“Wike and Atiku have started meeting. Let us wait for the official result of the meeting. As far as we are concerned, Governor Nyesom Wike is a bonafide member of our party. He is a leader of our party. Very soon, the hullabaloo will be over.
The PDP fell into deep crises following the nomination of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State as its Vice Presidential candidate.
Wike came second in the Presidential primary won by Atiku Abubakar.
The governor’s group has supposedly demanded resignation of Ayu as national chairman.

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Make Necessary Provision For Corps Members, NYSC DG Tasks Stakeholders

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Employers and stakeholders of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) have been called upon to accept corps members and make necessary welfare provisions available to them.
The stakeholders were also asked to encourage the corps members where necessary.
This call was contained in the address delivered by the NYSC Director-General, Brigadier General Mohammed KukaFadah at the closing ceremony of the 2022 Batch A Stream II orientation course at the NYSC permanent orientation camp, Ede, yesterday.
Represented by the Osun State NYSC Coordinator, AbdulwahabOlayinka, Fadah also thanked the Federal Government for its continued support to the scheme.
In his words, “Our appreciation goes to the state governments, local government councils, security agencies, the Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19, the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, the National Agency for the Control of AIDS, traditional rulers, corps employers and other stakeholders whose support have contributed to our successes over the years.”
Fadah, who charged the corps members to sustain the spirit of patriotism hard work and resilience, urged them to be good ambassadors of their families and their institutions.
While advising them to be wary of acts that portrayed negative image of the scheme, he reminded them to use the social media for self-improvement, as well as promotion of the unity, peace and prosperity of Nigeria.
On her part, the Osun NYSC State Coordinator, AbdulwahabOlayinka, advised the corps members not to put themselves in harm’s way, but to always be security conscious and report to the nearest security agency in case of any emergency.

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Okowa Congratulates New CAN President

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Delta State Governor, Senetor Ifeanyi Okowa, has congratulated Most Rev. Daniel Okoh, on his election as President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).
CAN formally validated the election of Okoh as its new President after polling 100 per cent of votes cast by the 259 delegates at its 12th General Assembly.
The Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) Vice-Presidential candidate also commended the Christian community for the peaceful conduct of the convention, saying that it reflected the promotion of peace and unity which it preached.
He charged Okoh to mobilise citizens to collectively pray for the country; champion the crusade of religious tolerance and build bridges in that regard.
“On behalf of the government and people of Delta, I congratulate Most Rev. Okoh on his election as CAN’s president.
“We are pleased with your peaceful emergence as the number one leader of Christians in Nigeria.
“The task ahead is onerous and it is our prayer that in your new position, God uses you to counsel and move the entire Christendom in Nigeria in the direction that you have been ordained to lead.
“I must also appreciate the role of the Church in promoting peaceful co-existence, education and social welfare in our state and country,’’ he said in a statement issued by his media aide, Olisa Ifeajika.
The governor also commended the outgoing president of the association, Dr Samson Ayokunle, for successfully piloting the affairs of CAN during his tenure.
“As Deltans, we remain extremely proud of your illustrious contributions to the growth of the Christian faith in Nigeria,’’ Okowa added.

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