Former National Security Advisor, Brigadier-General Nunoo-Mensah (Rtd), is daring the striking medical doctors to go ahead and resign en masse.
He’s also asked that they should hand over the keys to the government bungalows they are occupying when submitting their resignation letters.
This, he noted, will enable the government to readily accommodate doctors who would be contracted elsewhere to deliver health care services to Ghanaians.
“About some time ago, IEA held a meeting on governance and corruption and I met Dr. Serebour and I took an issue with him when he told me that they were going to embark on mass resignation. I told him that if you want to embark on mass resignation, you can go ahead but make sure that you will accompany the keys to your bungalow to the resignation letter that you will write and go.”
“This is because government has a duty to bring in somebody to come and look after Ghanaians. When I said this, he was taken aback,” noted Brigadier-General Nunoo-Mensah (Rtd) in an interview with Kwaku Owusu Adjei on Si Mi So on Kasapa 102.3 FM Friday.
His comment was in reaction to the strike action by the medical doctors who have for the past two weeks withdrawn all Out Patients Department (OPD) and Emergency services in all public health facilities in protest over poor conditions of service.
The doctors have further threatened to resign en masse if the government does not address their concerns. They are demanding among other things clothing and fuel allowances as well as on-call duty allowance.
They are also demanding for book and utility allowances as well as foreign medical services that are needed but not available in the country at any particular time, according to a leaked document from the seat of government.
Commenting further, he told Owusu Adjei that left to him alone, the striking doctors should not be paid whilst on strike.
“Whilst on strike, you don’t have to be paid. It is something that is bothering my mind.”
He adds that he is finding it very difficult to believe why the medical doctors should embark on strike whilst negotiations were ongoing.
He argued that since the matter bothers on human security, it would be in the interest of the doctors and the country as a whole for them to return to work, noting “it is not right to go on strike and watch people die. Will you be able to bring back to life all the people who have lost their lives as a result of your action once you are paid?”
He added “this is not the first time the doctors are withdrawing their services. In Acheampong’s time, a similar problem happened and the doctors withdrew their services. Acheampong then brought in Romanian doctors. In Rawlings time too, it happened and he brought in Cuban doctors. So, the government has a duty to look after Ghanaians. The government cannot abdicate that responsibility. It has to take action.”
When asked whether he has advised the government accordingly with his proposal, he answered in the negative.