The Nigerian Medical Association, NMA, Lagos State branch has ordered its members to resume work after it had declared a stay-at-home on Wednesday following police brutality.
The NMA on Wednesday ordered its members to stay at home after over-zealous police authorities ordered arrest of essential workers, such as doctors and journalists during curfew on Tuesday.
However, the association, in a statement issued by its Chairman, Dr. Saliu Oseni and the Secretary, Dr Ramon Moronkola on Thursday said it gave the earlier stay at home order to her members following the continued harassment by the officers and men of the Nigerian police force.
The association said 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.
“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,” it stated.
Following a holistic consideration of the above development, the Association stated that 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. 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 NMA commended Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu 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.