Health workers under the auspices of the Joint Health Sector Unions, JOHESU/the Assembly of Healthcare Professionals Associations, AHPA, have alleged short-changed in the payment of the agreed Hazard Allowance to their members, calling on the Federal Government to immediately remedy the lapses.
Disclosing these in a press statement signed by the Acting National Secretary, Com. Matthew Ajurotu, the Unions hinged their position on the fact that nothing has changed in the condition precedent to the employment of the various cadres of health workers in the last 12 years to warrant discrimination in the payment of their hazard allowances.
According to Ajurotu, based on earlier negotiations, the minimum benchmark and demand of JOHESU was that all health workers would earn the same hazard allowances based on their categorisation as junior and senior staff.
“This was the basis of the Federal Government’s original proposal of N12,500 and N25,000 to junior and senior cadres in the health sector.
“The JOHESU/AHPA team had canvassed that some players in other less critical sectors already earned a minimum of N30,000 as hazard allowance that compelled government to consider an increase from N12,500 and N25,000 respectively to N16,000 and N32,000 for health workers in view of the more sensitive nature of the health sector.
“Our members were short-changed as our philosophy for equity and equality which were the watchwords in the payment of hazard allowances for over twelve years were negated in the computation of the final figure reflected by the National Salaries, Income and Wages Commission (NSIWC) circular released a few days ago.”
Consequently, JOHESU/APHA stated that it strongly protested the divisive and discriminatory lexicons of ‘Clinical and Non-Clinical’ staff which was introduced in the new NSIWC circular because none of the staff who are on the Consolidated Health Salary Structure (CONHESS) and the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure (CONMESS) was designed as clinical and non-clinical in their original employment terms.
“While reminding the Federal Government that the 1999 Constitution prohibits discrimination against citizens of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, “which leaves us with no choice than to insist on a maintenance of the credible status-quo which places premium on all stakeholders on the two salary scales as Veritable Health Workers in Nigeria.,” he stated.