Kano – The National Association of Resident Doctors of Nigeria (NARD) will start a nationwide strike on Thursday, June 9, the National President, Dr Muhammad Askira, has announced. Askira told newsmen in Kano on Tuesday that the decision was taken at the ordinary general meeting of the National Executive Council of the association held between May 30 and June 5 in Jos. He said “16 out of 58 federal tertiary institutions or centres were exempted from the initial centre based strike for the commitment of the Chief Medical Director of the hospitals to implement the Federal Government’s directives.’’ He said if by midnight of Sunday, June 19, their demands were not met, all the members of the association, including those exempted, would join the indefinite nationwide strike. Askira said the association found it necessary to take the painful decision following the inability of the government to meet its demands. “Due to the failure of the government to address the demands of NARD, it has declared a total and indefinite strike. “NARD has to take this painful decision in order to highlight the plight of our hardworking members who have had to endure a long period of deprivation and disenfranchisement,” he said. He said the association would continue to be open to discussion and ready to partner government to ensure effective health care service delivery to Nigerians.