16 Sep 2005

Striking doctors in Samoa defy order to return to work

10:20 am on 16 September 2005

Striking government doctors in Samoa have defied an order to return to work.

A letter sent from the CEO of the Health Ministry Palantina Toelupe directed doctors to return to work by Wednesday.

Toelupe attached provisions of the Public Service Code of Conduct and invited the doctors to comply with the instructions.

The President of the Samoa Medical Association Dr Mauinu'uese Imo responded by saying that the strike would continue until the government adequately addresses the issues doctors have raised.

She said the government was just trying to threaten them but they wouldn't be intimidated.

Dr Imo told the Samoa Observer that the association didn't want to strike, but the government's refusal to heed their requests left them with no other alternative.

She said that the strike is for the future of the medical professionals.

Dr Imo confirmed that 32 doctors are on strike to demand better salaries for entry level and long-serving doctors.