17 Feb 2003

Staff at Gizo Hospital in Solomon Islands threaten strike action over unpaid wages

4:38 pm on 17 February 2003

Staff at Gizo Hospital in Solomon Islands' Western Province have threatened to strike because they have not been paid for nearly 2 months.

The Supervising Director, Dr Divi Ogaoga, says staff have issued a strike notice to the government giving it 84 days to pay their outstanding wages.

Dr Ogaoga says the hospital has not received its wages grant to pay its staff for three fortnightly pay periods.

He says some staff has asked for time off so that they can find some way of supporting their families.

Dr Ogaoga says the hospital will cut back on services this week because of the reduction in manpower.

"We are still in the process of doing this thing in an orderly manner so that it doesn't affect lives very much. The emergency department will only accept emergency cases and not routine out-patient cases and touring to the Islands will no longer go ahead and emphasis will be on just looking after the patients in the ward - the very sick ones"

Dr Divi Ogaoga, Supervising Director of Gizo Hospital