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Meeting with Presidential Secretary may avert token strike - GMOA

2014 Jan 27

The Government Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA) said a last-minute meeting with Presidential Secretary Lalith Weeratunga was the only possible way that the island-wide doctors’ strike scheduled for January 30 (Thursday) might be averted.
GMOA spokesperson Dr. Naveen de Zoysa said the token strike on Thursday ‘would still go ahead’ at this stage. However, he said there was the possibility that Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena might be able to grant GMOA representatives a meeting with the presidential secretary in a last-minute bid to avert the strike.

Weeratunga is currently in Geneva, is expected to return on Tuesday.
“It has been indicated that we might be able to meet with him either on Tuesday night or on Wednesday. However, nothing is certain at this point, and as such, the strike is still on,” Dr. de Zoysa added.
The GMOA is planning to launch the strike to protest against the continued delay by authorities to implement the Service Minute for doctors in the state sector.

Dr. de Zoysa claimed the Public Service Commission had deliberately delayed granting approval for the Service Minute for over a year now. He alleged the commission was acting as if it had ‘super powers,’ and was delaying something that had been agreed to by all relevant Government authorities including the Health Ministry, the Finance Ministry and the Salaries and Carder Commission.

The GMOA spokesperson further warned the token strike was only the first step in ‘a cycle’ of trade union actions the union was prepared to take if their demands continued to be ignored. (S J)

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