Medical workers in Nigeria can now leave home to discharge their duties at medical facilities across the country.
This comes as the Lagos State branch of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) reversed its stay-at-home order which it imposed from 6 pm on Wednesday May 20th, 2020.
In a statement on Thursday, NMA Chairman, Saliu Oseni, and the Secretary of the association, Moronkola Ramon, said that the decision to reverse the order became necessary, after the Nigerian Police Force and the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu assured the safety of all health workers.
Oseni added that the Nigerian Police Force contacted the association to clarify matters arising regarding the lockdown, and the movement of essential workers amid the COVID-19 lockdown.
The NMA has also assured its members that no health worker will be harassed in the course of performing their lawful duties.
Read Full Statement Below:
PRESS RELEASE OF THE LAGOS STATE BRANCH OF NIGERIAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION TO REVIEW HER SIT AT HOME ORDER DUE TO THE CONTINUED CONFLICTING DIRECTIVES OF GOVERNMENT AND LAW-ENFORCEMENT AGENTS ON THE STATUS OF ESSENTIAL WORKERS, INCLUDING DOCTORS AND OTHER HEALTH-WORKERS AND THE INCESSANT HARASSMENT OF HEALTHCARE WORKERS IN LAGOS
The Nigerian Medical association Lagos had given a stay at home order to her members following the continued harassment by the officers and men of the Nigerian police force. The decision was a necessary doctrine of self-preservation as it was unbearable combining the continued threat to life from the officers and men of the police force with the existing daily threat of COVID 19.
The leadership of the Association has followed the turn of events while monitoring the situation. The Nigerian police force has reached out to the Association to clarify and give assurance of cooperation with all health-workers. This, they have also done in the media. The executive Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu was exemplary as his timely intervention from the late hours of May 19th helped prevent worsening of the situation.
The association has further received assurances from Mr. Governor and the top hierarchy of the Police that no health workers will be further harassed in the course of their lawful efforts to sustain services in the middle of the pandemic (see attachments).
Above all, the passionate appeal from the good people of Lagos state is difficult to resist considering the fact that they will be most hit by the situation.
Following a holistic consideration of the above development, the Association hereby resolves as follows;
- The doctors in Lagos State, under the auspices of NMA, has, and takes seriously, a responsibility to partake actively in the fight against Covid-19 and the delivery of quality healthcare to the citizenry for the entire period of the ongoing lockdown/ restriction of movement and beyond.
- That the sit at home order issued on the 19th of May is hereby reversed and our members are hereby directed to resume work from 6 pm today 21st of May 2020 (this affects those on-call duties).
- That the Lagos state government should ensure clarity at all times, on the exempted status of healthcare and other essential workers for the entire period of the ongoing lockdown/restriction of movement.
- That the Association will continue to monitor the situation and will not hesitate to take any action to protect the safety of our hardworking members.
The Association expresses appreciation to Mr. Governor for his timely intervention and continued assurances in ensuring that the health-workers who were held by the police were released immediately and in preventing subsequent recurrence.
We also appreciate the Honourable minister for health Dr. Enahire Osagie and the HCH Lagos state professor Akin Abayomi on their timely interventions.
Dr Saliu Oseni Dr Ramon Moronkola