…..Nationalist Movement For Development
The adage that when two elephants fight is the grass that suffers could only best describe the current impasse between the Government of Ghana and the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) with dire consequence on patients which could lead to loss of lives and worsened situation considering the outcome of same happenings in the past. Such a sensitive national issue which ultimately borders on human life and death is one that must merit the attention of every concerned Ghanaian, hence our contribution to the discourse as a movement etched on nationalism!
The saying in our Akan proverbs that “nia obr3 naodie”, to wit, the one who works deserves some compensation clearly justifies the fact that Doctors like any other workers on government payroll shouldn’t be allowed to work on empty stomach, hence a strong case they could make for themselves if government delays in the payment of their salaries, especially considering how essential their services are to the public. However, what we are presently confronted with as a nation is not about Doctors salary but their conditions of service.
The rationale behind providing every worker and for that matter Doctors with some conditions of service is to cushion their salaries, and with our Doctors, and taking into consideration the special training they have gone through and how essential their services are, their present conditions of service is mouthwatering and qualifies as the most decorated amongst workers on government payroll.
One could argue in defense of the Doctors that “nnamdoduo 3nsei nkwan”, to wit, too much meat doesn’t spoil the soup, but same couldn’t be argued for the state of ones’ purse and condition after the purse has been emptied into the soup. And that’s where our Doctors must come again with the kinds of demands they have tabled before the government which the public purse can’t support. The content of that demand which was leaked for public consumption hasn’t been denied by the leadership of the GMA, and that to us qualifies it as a true and faithful representation of what the Doctors are really demanding from the tax payer, and that could only suggest that Doctors want to drain the public purse by “quadrupling” their conditions of service. And the question everyone seem to ask is that “what then happens if other public servants begin to press similar demands?”
It is amply necessary to refresh our minds that this isn’t the first time our Doctors have come up with earthquaking demands without considering governments contribution to their training at the medical school and the attention government continues to attach to their welfare in their field of practice. So we still don’t understand why Doctors should almost always resort to strike actions to coerce government to succumb to their demands and to position themselves as if their behavior is another side of the Hippocratic oath which we the lay persons are not seeing.
We have come to the realization that what the public is going through in the hands of the doctors is motivated and reinforced by the following:
✔️Comparison with colleagues abroad
✔️Comparison with the supposed opulence of politicians
✔️GMA assuming a political front than a welfare body of unique profession
✔️Silence of the clergy and key stakeholders
✔️Doctors exploiting and abusing the essentiality of their service as a bargaining chip to demand for more
✔️The greed to own private hospitals.
The truth they say is synonymous to the buttocks and whether you like it or not you will definitely sit on it. So the truth and the facts must stand out and inform our decision on the way forward. It must be put out there without any scintilla of equivocation that the Doctors’ strike action is illegal and uncalled for and that their posturing, actions and the utterances being made by some of their leadership will sully the image of the enviable profession.
We entreat the Doctors to protect the sanctity of their profession and their oath by going back to work whilst diplomatic means must be employed by the government to negotiate the demands made by the Doctors without compromising the interest of the tax payer.
We appreciate the contribution of our Doctors and admit fully that they are a strong part of our nation’s spine and must put the interest of the nation first!