The Federal Government on Tuesday acceded to one of the demands of health workers by raising their retirement age and that of doctors to 65.
The government also approved 70 as retirement age for consultants.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, stated this in Abuja after a meeting between the Presidential Committee on Salaries, the Health Sector Professional Associations and Trade Unions on the Issue of Hazard Allowance and Retirement Age for Health Sector Workers in Government Health Establishments.
Addressing reporters later, Ngige said: “We’ve taken their proposal. The government side will firm up its own proposal and we’re reconvening June 1 so that we can have an agreed hazard allowance for health workers in Nigeria.
“We also discussed the issue of retirement age for health workers, being that we want to keep our health workers here in Nigeria. A lot of people are coming here to poach and take away people we’ve trained at very great cost. It takes a lot of funds to train a medical doctor, nurse or even a laboratory technologist or physiotherapist.
“So, we want to retain them here. They could be retained for a longer time by making their retirement age to get up to 65 for normal health workers and doctors, and 70 years for consultants.’’
President, Nigerian Medical Association, Emmanuel Ujah and his Joint Health Sector Union’s counterpart, Josiah Biobelemoye, expressed optimism that an agreement capable of giving Nigerians quality healthcare services would be reached.