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Doctors threaten strike from over non-settlement of arrears

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The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) has given the government up to September 30, 2021, to settle outstanding arrears to its members or face a strike.

In a communiqué issued after a National Executive Council meeting, the Association said the strike would begin from October 1, 2021, with the suspension of Outpatient-services.

“Withdrawal of all in-patient services will begin the following week (effective Friday 8th October 2021) if all the issues are still not completely resolved,” the communiqué explained further.

The complete withdrawal of services would then begin from October 15.

In further comments on Eyewitness News, the Association’s General Secretary, Dr. Justice Yankson, said his side has been “more than magnanimous enough and the government should be able to honour its commitment.”

According to him, the association’s demands are based on conditions of service documents agreed upon that took off in January 2021.

“Now, the implementation of that documentation has been fraught with problems. We have done our ultimate best to get this resolved behind the scenes. We’ve had countless numbers of meetings.”

Dr. Yankson, who described the strike threat as a last resort, expressed hope that government would respond positively.

“We’ve done our utmost best under the circumstances to get the matters resolved. We have had to take this direction because that probably seems to be our last resort.”

“Even that, we still have given the government ample time, and we expect that in good faith, they should be able to discharge their obligations towards us,” he added.

The association’s last threat of a strike was in February 2020, also over the implementation of signed Conditions of Service.

The doctors rescinded the strike threat after talks with the government.

This threat comes at a time when the government is already dealing with a number of labour agitations within the education sector.

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