An appeal has gone to medical doctors in the country to desist from using the strike option in their occasional brawl with the authority because they have a sacred mandate to preserve human lives, which could be jeopardised by incessant strikes.
The appeal was made by the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, Prof. AbdulGaniyu Ambali (OON), last Wednesday (June 18, 2015), at the 31st professional initiation and admission ceremony for the 2015 Batch B medical graduands of the University. A total of 31 new medical doctors took the Hippocratic Oath at the ceremony.
In his address, entitled “Noble and Divine”, Prof. Ambali, who was represented by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), Prof. N. Y. S. Ijaiya, said, “I want to use this medium to appeal to our doctors to avoid strike as much as possible not because they don’t have legitimate reasons but for the sake of the poor and vulnerable patients, whose lives and health depend on them.”
The Vice-Chancellor explained that the sanctity of human life remains inviolable and that doctors cannot be rewarded enough for their efforts, adding that their goals should be beyond the mundane or the pecuniary.
“This is why it saddens me greatly when doctors embark on strike as they are often forced to do by circumstances”, Prof. Ambali said, adding that “when two elephants fight, it is the grass that suffers. It is the lives of the poor people, the victims of the system that warranted the strike in the first instance that are wasted as long as the strike lasts”.
Expressing confidence that the graduands have been adequately trained and prepared for the challenges of work and further studies, which come after the induction, the Vice-Chancellor told the new medical doctors to consider themselves fortunate, as receiving medical training and graduating successfully are not just a function of being brilliant but also of being fortunate.
The Vice-Chancellor pointed out that the medical graduands had “been trained by some of the best academics and professionals in the world”, adding that “there is thus no reason to flag or fail” in their career.
He submitted that the University of Ilorin would not relent in its pursuit of excellence, describing the University as a key international centre of excellence. He stated further that the institution’s College of Health Sciences is one of the most reputable Colleges of Health Sciences in Nigeria and beyond.
Prof. Ambali then urged the graduands to always make honesty, integrity, professionalism, hard work and sacrifice their watch words. He also counselled them not to lose connection with their God, noting that it takes God to succeed in every endeavour of life.
In his own address, the Provost, College of Health Sciences, Prof. Wahab B. R. Johnson, disclosed that clinical training in the College of Health Sciences has taken a giant innovative turn with the completion, comprehensive equipment and subsequent commissioning of its ultra-modern Clinical Skills and Simulation Laboratory (CSSL).
Prof. Johnson added that the robust MB;BS programme of the College has continued to turn out, on yearly basis, well-trained medical doctors, who have continued to contribute quantitatively and qualitatively to the health-care needs of the nation.
The Provost said, “Indeed, with today’s 31st induction of 31 additional doctors, our medical school has produced 4,093 in our 38 years of existence. Over the years, the products of our medical programme are currently professors and medical administrators in several institutions within Nigeria and in the diaspora”.
The 31 graduands later took their Hippocratic Oath, which was administered on them by the Registrar of the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN), Dr. Ibrahim Abdulmumuni, who was represented by the Director, Medical Services, Kwara State Ministry of Health, Dr. Isaac. O. Oludipe.
Before administering the Oath, the Registrar advised the medical graduands to take documentation seriously and remember to always seek the patient’s consent in the discharge of their duties. He stressed that they should not be in a hurry to document, warning that such negligence has given doctors legal problems in the past.
Also speaking on the occasion, the Chairman, Nigeria Medical Association (NMA), Kwara State Branch, Dr. O. A. Ayinla, said that the graduating Batch B set is another batch of excellence and tasked them to strive for their own personal respect.
Dr. Ayinla, whose address was read by the Deputy Chairman, Dr. Kunle Olawepo, charged the new medical graduands to be ready to learn at all times and to ensure they are duly registered with the association.
In his own remarks, the President of Unilorin Medical Graduands Association, Dr. A. Fawole, told the graduands that their time would no longer be theirs, admonishing them to be hard working and modest. Dr. Fawole enjoined them to worship God and to remember their families.
He reminded the graduands to be mindful of their alma mater, calling on them to give back to the University that has given them so much.