Lagos – Doctors in Nigeria’s state-run hospitals have embarked on a strike to demand a pay rise, better welfare and adequate facilities.
The strike by the National Association of Resident Doctors (Nard) is the latest in a string of protests by medical professionals in Africa’s most populous nation.
Over a third of Nigeria’s 42,000 practising doctors will take part in the indefinite strike as the country struggles to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Leader of doctors’ union, Aliyu Sokomba said the doctors handling Covid-19 cases would be part of the strike.
Sokomba said that the strike would not be called off until the government has met their demands.
They want life insurance and death-in-service benefits provided for all health workers and payment of outstanding salaries and allowances.
According to Nard, 14 doctors had died from Covid-19 since the country reported its first coronavirus cases in March.
Since the pandemic begun, doctors have expressed frustrations over pay and a lack of proper protection for those managing Covid-19 patients.
In June, resident doctors staged a week-long strike over welfare and inadequate protective kits but doctors treating coronavirus cases continued working.
So far Nigeria has recorded more than 55,000 cases of coronavirus.