Striking nurses fight hospital heads

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The Spokesperson for the Coalition of unpaid nurses is accusing hospital administrators of undermining a strike action the coalition called to demand unpaid salary arrears, Monday.

According to Jefferson Danquah, his members are being threatened with dismissal if they go on strike.

Over 7,000 unpaid nurses across the country were expected to carry through a strike called by the parent body but Joy News checks across some hospitals indicate the strike failed.

Majority of the nurses who were asked to abandon the hospitals were actually at work performing the duties for which they have not been paid for over a year.

Some of the nurses told Joy News' Matilda Wemega they could not sit at home because of their love for the job.

One of the nurses said she may lose her job if she went on strike.

In an interview, Jefferson Danquah said some of the nurses are capitulating to threats of dismissal.

He said such threats will not work because "they can force a horse to the river side but can't force it to drink."

"If they force us we can do worse things," he added.

He said the conditions under which some of the nurses are living makes it rather inhuman to ask them to continue going to work when they have not been paid.

"We all love our job," he said, "but if a person doesn't have the means to go to work" how does he function at work? he asked.

The Health Ministry has called on the striking nurses to exercise restraint as it works to solve the problem.

The Public Relations Officer of the Ministry, Tony Goodman said within a week or two the striking nurses will receive their salaries.

But Mr Danquah is not convinced. He said they have received several other promises in the past but all to no avail.

According to him, the Ministry promised to pay them on August 14 but it reneged on that after which it rescheduled to August ending and later to September ending but they have not received anything.

He said with these broken promises the nurses do not trust the government and will only return to work after they have received their unpaid salaries.

He said the impact of the strike will thoroughly be felt more beginning from today.

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