The Public Employees Association of PNG has given a five-day ultimatum to the government, saying it will withdraw frontline health workers from duties, if the government does not address their outstanding Log of Claims.
In a media conference today in Port Moresby, General Secretary Peter Togs and other senior members of the association expressed their concerns, in light of a cluster of frontline health workers testing positive to COVID-19 in recent weeks.
Togs said the claims being made are not fresh issues but are agreed matters in the 2011 – 2013 Memorandum of Agreement.
He says the issuing of the ultimatum to withdraw frontline health workers is a result of the State’s negative response to the Association’s claim on the review of the Association’s MOA of 2013.
In recent weeks, a cluster of laboratory technicians tested positive to COVID-19, raising concerns on their safety.
The Public Employees Association of PNG says this polarizes the risk that these workers are exposed to, and the lack of PPEs for frontline workers in laboratories throughout Papua New Guinea.
Christopher Aquame from the PNG Medical Scientists Association expressed concern on the safety of medical technicians in their working environment, given the intensifying situation of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country.
Health Extension Officers in the country are facing similar challenges, and also demand immediate government intervention.