(News investigators) The Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, says “the sense of entitlement syndrome in the country is too much”.
The Minister’s statement is coming on the heels of threat by the health workers to embark on strike following a proposed bill in the National Assembly to curb brain drain in the health sector.
Recall that the House of Representatives, worried by the imminent threat of brain drain in the nation’s health sector, had proposed a bill to address the crisis.
Sponsored by Ganiyu Johnson, representing Oshodi-Isolo Federal Constituency 2 of Lagos State in the House of Representatives, it seeks to amend the Medical and Dental Practitioners Act to prevent Nigerian-trained medical or dental practitioners from being granted full licences until they have worked in the country for at least five years.
The bill has continued to attract opposition from healthcare practitioners.
However, Ngige said that people borrow money to study medical courses in most countries, which they pay back after graduation.
He claimed that it is the reason they don’t leave their countries unlike their counterparts in Nigeria.
Ngige said, “It’s left for the education ministry and universities to fashion out what they can do where we now train people free of charge because they pay N48,000 to N50,000 a session for medical training. Whereas their counterpart abroad pays $100,000 in the US and £78,000 in the UK.
“They borrowed the money from the bank and when they graduate as medical doctors, they are paying back. That’s why they’re not even leaving their country.
“And here we train you free.
I obtained that free training. In fact my own I was even on scholarship. Why won’t I be patriotic to serve my country?
“So you asked that the bill taken to the National Assembly by a member be removed that it is one of the reasons you want to go on strike?
“How can a government tell a member who has done a private member’s bill, it’s not even an executive bill, to withdraw it?
You now enlist it as one of the conditions to go on strike. That’s absurd.
The sense of entitlement syndrome is too much in this country..”