The Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), has attributed the mass migration of its members to other African countries to lack of better working conditions and infrastructure in the health sector.
The association expressed this concern ahead of its plan to protest at the Federal Ministry of Health, Office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation, as well as all federal and state tertiary health institutions nationwide from Wednesday.
Information Nigeria reports that the move is the latest in the resident doctors’ efforts to expedite the implementation of a prior agreement with the Federal Government, including the immediate payment of the 2023 Medical Residency Training Fund (MRTF), the immediate release of the circular on one-for-one replacement, and the payment of skipping arrears.
Speaking in an interview on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics, NARD’s President, Emeka Orji, noted that working conditions in the Nigerian health sector had deteriorated to such a degree that resident doctors were migrating to foreign countries
According to Orji, the number of Nigerian resident doctors has dwindled from 16,000 to between 12,000 and 15,000 in a few years with 1,000 to 2,000 colleagues lost to the japa syndrome annually.
Asked to comment on some of the preferred countries of these doctors, Orji said, “And some of them are even going to African countries. That would tell you how bad the Nigerian health sector has become, that doctors leave this country and go to African countries.”
He furthered that “they have better working conditions there; they have better infrastructure. And we are supposed to be giants to Africa.”