The Jos University Teaching Hospital has terminated the residency training programme of 25 resident doctors without recourse to the 'Medical Residency Training Act' 2017 signed by President Muhammadu Buhari.
President Buhari had signed the Medical Residency Training Act to allow all resident doctors to train and pass all examinations generally over a period of eight-and-a-half-year.
The 25 affected resident doctors were admitted between October and December 2012 and their letters stated that their program would be for a period of six years, which should have ended between October and December 2018.
But due to the Act signed into law by President Buhari and gazetted on July 16, 2018, it became imperative for resident doctors with running training to benefit from the new enactment that regulated the residency programme.
Meanwhile, the management of Jos University Teaching Hospital hinged the termination of the training of the 25 resident doctors on the fact that at the time the Ministry of Health communicated to them on the MRTA 2017 on June 18, 2019 the tenure of those affected had expired.
But during the last engagement of the executive council of the association of resident doctors with the hospital management in November 2019, the management reiterated its decision to implement the MRTA and assured that everyone in the system will be protected by the provisions of the Act.
However, contrary to this position and truce reached in accordance with the MRTA, the Jos University Teaching Hospital still unlawfully terminated the training of the resident doctors, most of whom were yet to attempt the exams or complete their clinical rotations that should qualify them to partake in the examinations.
A similar situation occurred in Benue State University Teaching Hospital, Makurdi, where 33 resident doctors were wrongfully sacked last month but after series of deliberations with the state governor, they were recalled.
The Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors has already written the CMD of Jos University Teaching Hospital to recall the affected resident doctors since their termination contravenes the MRTA and violates the law.
This development comes at a time Nigeria is in dire need of medical workers to help combat the COVID-19 pandemic in the country.