George Okon
Sun, Aug 27, 2023 11:45 PM

Nigerian Medical Association Suspends Strike Demanding Release of Kidnapped Colleague

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Nigerian Medical Association Suspends Strike Demanding Release of Kidnapped Colleague
The Cross River State chapter of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has temporarily suspended its 40-day strike, which was initiated to demand the release of their kidnapped colleague, Professor Ekanem Ephraim. The strike's suspension highlights the urgent need for a robust security strategy to protect not only medical practitioners but all citizens in Nigeria.

The Cross River State chapter of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has temporarily suspended its 40-day strike, which was initiated to demand the release of their abducted colleague, Professor Ekanem Ephraim. The strike's suspension highlights the dire situation of healthcare kidnappings in Nigeria and underscores the urgent need for a robust security strategy to protect not only medical practitioners but all citizens.

Ephraim, a dedicated medical professional, was taken captive from her medical facility on July 13, 2023, in the Calabar Municipality Local Government Area. The NMA took up the cause, demanding her safe release.

Dr. Felix Archibong, the state Chairman of the NMA, made the announcement to suspend the strike after an emergency meeting with the association members. The decision was made in response to an appeal letter from Cross River Governor Sen Bassey Otu and the assurance of increased security measures in the metropolis.

The NMA has given the government a two-week deadline to secure Ephraim's release. If any other member is kidnapped within this period, the strike will resume.

The suspension of the strike by the NMA is a significant development. It manifests the growing concern over the alarming rise of kidnappings in Nigeria, even affecting essential services like healthcare.

It is imperative that the Nigerian government take swift and decisive action to tackle the security challenges faced by medical professionals and citizens alike. The safety and well-being of healthcare workers, who play a vital role in the nation's development, must be prioritized.

In recent years, there has been an increase in kidnappings targeting medical professionals in Nigeria. These incidents not only disrupt the healthcare system but also have detrimental effects on the quality and accessibility of medical services for the Nigerian population.

The NMA chairman highlighted the state government's announcement of a N5 million bounty for information leading to the arrest of the kidnappers and the safe release of Ephraim. The association pleaded with the abductors to release their colleague unharmed and expressed willingness to cooperate.

While the strike may be temporarily suspended, the issue of healthcare kidnappings remains a pressing concern. The NMA's firm stand demonstrates their commitment to the safety and well-being of their members, as well as their dedication to delivering quality healthcare services to the Nigerian people.

It is crucial that the Nigerian government takes concrete actions to address the root causes of these security challenges. The protection and security of medical professionals will not only ensure the delivery of quality healthcare but also contribute to the overall well-being and development of the nation.

The situation in Nigeria calls for a comprehensive security strategy that not only targets healthcare kidnappings but also addresses the underlying issues that fuel them. Investments in law enforcement, intelligence gathering, and community engagement are essential to combat this growing menace.

The NMA's decision to suspend the strike should serve as a wake-up call for the Nigerian government to prioritize the security and protection of healthcare workers. Their dedication to their profession and the service they provide must be reciprocated with adequate security measures.

It is crucial for the government to work closely with the NMA and other stakeholders to develop a comprehensive security plan that safeguards the healthcare system and restores trust among medical professionals.

The suspension of the strike is a temporary respite, highlighting the urgent need for concerted efforts to address the security challenges facing the Nigerian healthcare sector. Only by ensuring the safety of healthcare workers can the nation provide effective and reliable medical services to its citizens.

Source of content: OOO News 2023-08-27 News

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