Docs’ strike put off

by Don Asoka Wijewardena

Health Secretary Dr. D. M. R.B. Dissanayaka yesterday said that the Government Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA) had suspended an indefinite strike scheduled to be launched on Feb. 21 to pressure the new government to grant salary increase as well as special allowances announced by the previous government.

The decision to suspend the planned strike was taken following a meeting between GMOA representatives and Finance Secretary Dr. A. Samaratunga yesterday.

The GMOA was given an assurance that the 2015 circular issued by the then Finance Secretary Dr. P. B. Jayasundara would be implemented, Dr. Dissanayake said the Health Secretary was responding to The Island after having attended yesterday’s meeting chaired by Finance Secretary.

Dr. Dissanayake said that he would Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake along with Finance Secretary to finalise the arrangement on Feb. 16.

GMOA Assistant Secretary Dr. Nalinda Herath said his association was happy with the outcome at yesterday’s meeting. However, a final decision on the implementation of the salary ratio of 1:4.25 and increase in allowances would be taken up at the proposed meeting with Minister Karunanayaka.

Dr. Herath said the GMOA would resort to trade union action during the last week of this month unless over 20,000 doctors received due salary increases and the allowances with their February salaries.

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