General News of Tuesday, 25 February 2020
Doctors in Ghana have hinted of planned strike action if the government fails to implement its part of a signed Conditions of Service.
An internal memo issued by the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) reportedly directed their members to withdraw their services in all public health facilities if their demands are not met by February 29, 2020.
Dated February 21, 2020, and jointly signed by President of GMA, Dr. Frank Ankobea and General Secretary, Dr. Justice Yankson, the memo said that although the implementation date for the signed Conditions of Service document was 1st January 2020 as agreed by all parties, government had failed to meet the deadline.
The internal memo warned that, “The Association has accordingly given the government up to Saturday, 29th February 2020 to ensure full implementation (including payment of all occasioned arrears) of the CoS document at both the National and facility levels. If any default on the part of Government occurs Vis-à-vis the stated deadline, there shall be an immediate withdrawal of all services by members in all facilities.”
The National Executive Committee of the Medical Association said it also observed that during the validation of February salaries, there was the absence of fuel allowance on the payslips of members; and urged members to put all discrepancies on notice for rectification.
In separate letters addressed to the Ministers for Health, and Employment and Labour Relations, the Association expressed grave concern over the development.
Both letters said the Conditions of Service document implementation has not taken place both at the National and facility levels despite numerous calls on Government to do so.
The Medical Association thus requested for the immediate facilitation of the Ministers to forestall an industrial action.
In 2014, doctors and pharmacist in the West African country continued a 21-day strike action following a long-standing dispute over salary arrears.
Only emergency cases or patients admitted before the start of the strike received medical attention.