A Memorandum of Understanding signed by government, doctors and the Trades Union Congress sighted by Joy News has contradicted earlier claims by the doctors that they did not agree to be paid in installments.
The doctors on Monday intensified their strike by withdrawing all services, including refusal to attend to emergency cases.
Checks by Joy News indicate some hospitals are turning away patients. Earlier today, frustrated patients who trooped into some of the public hospitals across the country left to seek healthcare elsewhere.
But the MOU signed by four persons dated 11th April 2013 indicated that parties agreed on schedule for the payment of doctors’ market premium arrears for 2012 and January to April 2013.
The signatories to the MOU were: Nii Armah Ashietey, Minister for Employment and Labour Relations; Dr Kwabena Opoku-Adusei, President Ghana Medical Association; Dr. Alhassan Iddrisu, AG. Director, Economic Research and Forecasting Division for Minister of Finance; and Kofi Asamoah, Secretary-General, Ghana Trades Union Congress
They also agreed that 2013 market premium will based on 2012 basic salary in line with the Government’s White Paper on Guidelines on the Market Premium.
The MOU also stated the issue of Conversion Difference and Pension is being dealt with by the Single Spine Post-Migration Technical Committee and Government and the Ghana Medical Association will ensure commitment to the process.
Meanwhile, government says it is disappointed in the leadership of the GMA and questions their motivation in embarking on this extreme measure of withdrawal of even emergency medical services with potential of causing loss of live.
But President of the GMA, Dr Kwabena Adusei-Poku told Joy News though he appended his signature to the MOU, the other parties were made to understand that the content of the MOU would be communicated to the “larger council” for action.
He explained that they intensified their strike because National Executive Council of the GMA did not buy into the MOU and demanded that the government show more commitment and give clear instruction on how they would be paid. He said the Council’s decision was informed by failures on the part of government to live up to similar MOUs.
Meanwhile, in the Northern regional capital Tamale, checks by Joy News indicate doctors are still attending to patients despite the directive by their leaders.
The doctors who pleaded anonymity explained their action was borne out of sympathy.
Clikc here for copy of the MOU