The House of Representatives on Wednesday denounced the brain drain in the country due to the discontent which has prompted doctors to leave the country in droves.
To stem the trend, they called for an upward revision of allowances for doctors working in private and public hospitals across the country.
Lawmakers in lower legislative chambers have said this while making their contributions to the 2022 budget debate, saying the allowance for doctors’ allowances should be increased to N50 billion.
Presenting their views on borrowing, members called for prudent use of funds as well as domestic and external borrowing proposed in the 2022 Appropriation Bill currently under consideration by the House and Senate.
The Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, the Hon. Luke Onofiok, Minority Leader, Hon. Ndudi Elumelu, Hon. Abubakar Kabir among others gave the charge during the debate on the general principles of the 2022 budget bill.
In his remarks, the Hon. Onofiok, who applauded the 10 billion naira increase in the allowance for judicial officers, called for an upward revision of the proposed risk allowance of 50 billion naira for doctors under the measures to reverse the exodus of medical personnel to other countries amid the lingering pandemic.
Hon. Onofiok said, “Following on from the above, there are plausible recommendations from the FG in the 2022 proposals that my constituents have asked me to share, then appreciate, review and praise.
“One of them is the provision of approximately $ 50 billion for the risk allowance for medical personnel. Let us recall that among the problems which led the medical staff to go on strike, there are the risk indemnities which have not been paid and even to this day, these risk indemnities are very minimal.
“We applaud this effort by the federal government to capture this. I think this would stem the tide of industrial action in the health sector in 2022.
According to him, “This is also commendable in the sense that we are still fighting COVID 19, we know that the federal government paid about three months of COVID-19id-19 allowance, and after that these allowances did not been paid. We know what medical staff are exposed to on a daily basis, so it is necessary that they receive these allowances so that it can boost morale.
“We’ve had a lot of brain drain over the past few years because our egg heads have been pushed to go to other climates due to the challenges we have here. So while we congratulate Mr. President for that, it is necessary that we increase this risk allowance from N5,000 which has been for over 20 years to something that will boost the morale of this medical staff.
“So that’s commendable, but we can also look at how we can increase the risk premium for medical staff. “
He also congratulated the President for approving the front line fee for the National Agency for Scientific and Technical Infrastructure. The world is moving towards technology and we have to keep pace with the changing world and I would like to congratulate Mr. Chairman and congratulate the FEC for looking at this prospect to try to get a statutory transfer for the agency .
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