PNG Nurses Association delays stop work action

The Papua New Guinea Nurses Association (PNGNA) has delayed its planned nationwide stop work action.

This follows a near positive outcome at a meeting today between PNGNA executives, Chief Secretary Isaac Lupari and Health Secretary Pascoe Kase.

PNGNA threatened to stop its financial members of 5,000 nurses in turning up for work on Wednesday, Sept 14 if the National Government does not respond to their outstanding claims.

Their claims include the non-payment of their wages and other benefits.

A nurse’s industrial award was signed with the Government in December, 2015 regarding their wages and other benefits which was supposed to be effected in January.

However, to date, they are yet to be paid these wages and other benefits.

PNGNA acting president Steven Nawik said, when addressing the media today, that Lupari and Kase during their meeting have made a commitment to address their issues.

Nawik highlighted that the Government has accepted that it has signed an agreement and is now looking for funds to honor that commitment.

Nawik confirmed that the stop work still stands but will be delayed awaiting the response from the chief secretary by Wednesday, September 14.

This will follow the outcome of a budget management committee meeting.

Nawik said: “The Chief Secretary will inform us after their meeting whether there is a way forward in implementing the award or not.

“After the feedback from the Chief Secretary’s office, we will make a decision on our stop work plan.

Nawik said they have exhausted all avenues in dealing with this issue to arrive at this level.

He acknowledged Lupari and Kase for taking on board the responsibility to assist them find a way forward to implementing this agreement.

PNGNA will call for a stop walk if it doesn’t receive a positive response.

Picture by Loop photographer Kennedy Bani

Quintina Naime