Bye Law - Rules and Regulations

1.   Name

There shall be an association of registered medical and dental practitioners residing and practicing in Enugu State of Nigeria, called Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) Enugu State Branch hereafter referred to as the state Branch Association.

2.   Aims

  1. To ensure that Medical and Dental Practitioners in this state uphold the Physicians oath (i.e. the Declaration of Geneva), which is the modern Hippocratic Oath. In this regard, the state branch acts as the agent of the National Body in ensuring compliance.
  2. To promote closer relationship between all registered medical and dental practitioners in the state.
  3. To participate in and promote quality medical delivery in the state.
  4. To educate the public on medical/scientific issues in so far as they affect the State.
  5. To organise for continuing medical education of its members.
  6. To consider and express views on all proposed legislations affecting health care delivery system and where applicable medical and dental education in the Enugu state of Nigeria.
  7. To seek to participate in and cooperate with the State Government  and its agencies in determining adequate medical manpower needs and efficient health care delivery in the state.
  8. To invest the monies of the Associations not immediately required for its purpose in any profitable venture in accordance with the general wishes of the members on the recommendation of the Executive Council.
  9. To establish and support or aid in the establishment and support of any charitable organisation or institution and to subscribe or guarantee money for charitable purpose of the Association or calculated to further its objects.
  10. To do all such other things as shall further the attainment of its objects or any of them.

3.   Membership

Membership shall be upon to all medical and dental practitioners who reside and practice in the state of Enugu provided such persons qualify for membership of the Nigerian Medical Association as prescribed by the National constitution of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) Constitution viz: Ordinary, Life, Honorary, Associate, Temporary, Student and Distant Membership shall apply. However, Student members shall not have any voting rights.

4.   Termination of Membership

  1. Termination of membership in the state Nigerian Medical association shall be governed by the provisions of termination of membership as provided for in the constitution of Nigerian Medical Association.
  2. Members relocating outside the state shall inform the state Secretariat of the date of absence from the state through the members’ zonal secretariat.

5.   Zones

  1. Members of the Association residing in major towns and their environs in the state have the right to constitute themselves into zones of the state Branch Association.
  2. No zone shall be constituted unless it has been created by the General Meeting on the recommendation of the state Executive Council acting on its own initiative or following a written request by at least 20 members of the Association resident in the area of the proposed zone; provided no local Government Area shall have more than one zone.
  3. The zones unless otherwise stated, shall be bound by the provisions of the ‘’rules and regulations’’ of the State Branch (NMA) and shall have the right to make their ‘’rules and regulations’’ regulating their zones.
  4. Unless otherwise provided for  in this ‘’rules  and regulations’’ where there exists a conflict between the ‘’Rules and Regulations’’ as made by  zones and ‘’the rules and regulations’’ and decisions of the state 
  5. Every zone in the state branch shall have the right to determine the tenure of office of its officials without prejudice to provisions of the state Branch on election of officers. The zone shall have right to conduct their elections according to their own ‘’rules and regulations’’.
  6. A zone shall have power to establish its own necessary quorum for all meetings taking into considerations the size of its membership.
  7. Each zone shall have a zonal executive committee comprising of chairman, secretary and treasurer and any such officers which the zones deems necessary to carry out its functions.
  8. Each zone shall give a report of its activities at the Annual General Meeting of the State Nigerian Medical Association.
  9. The State branch Nigeria Medical Association shall have powers to assign specific Committee duties to any of its zones.

6.   The General Meeting (State NMA General Meeting)

  1. Membership to the state General Meeting of the Nigerian Medical Association is automatic for all duly registered members. The Annual General Meeting of the State Association is automatic for all duly registered members. The Annual General Meeting shall have the right to elect members to the executive Council, committee, trusteeship and any other posts determined and accepted by it by a simple majority.
  2. General meetings shall be summoned at least three times each calendar year provided that one of the meetings shall be the annual General Meeting, and another scientific conference/ Annual Dinner.
  3. The Annual General Meeting shall be in the month of June and the Scientific Conference / Annual Dinner shall be in the month of November/December.
  4. If the General Meetings are not called within any Calendar year, a request in writing signed by 30 or more financial members resident  in at least one half of the existing zones in the state at the time of the request, may ask for such a meeting to be convened.
  5. The request shall state the specific issues to be issues to be considered and shall be lodged with the State Nigerian Medical Association Chairman and/ or the Secretary. Notice of such a meeting be in accordance with article 8 of this rules and regulations, failure to call the meeting then shall be called as an emergency meeting as provide for in article 7.  
  6. There is no delegate system for the State General Meetings.
  7. At the Annual General Meeting, the Chairman, Secretary, Financial Secretary and treasurer shall submit report on the activities of the Association for the year. In particular the financial secretary shall submit an audited account of the Association for the financial year preceding the Annual General Meeting.

7.   Emergency General Meeting

  1. The state executive Council  may whenever it deems necessary or shall upon a request made in writing and signed by any thirty (30) or more financial members from at least one half of the existing zones of the state Branch at the time of the request, convene a General Meeting for the purpose of considering specific issues. Any other issues not included in the notice of the meeting shall not be discussed or considered.
  2. The state Executive council shall call a general within one month of the receipt of such a request, failing which the members asking for such a meeting may themselves convene such a meeting for the issues specified in the request only.

8.   Notice of Meeting

  1. Notice of Meeting of the State Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) General Meeting stating the date, time and venue of the meeting shall be dispatched through the zonal secretariat o published at least two weeks before the date of the meeting to the members.
  2. Seven days notice shall be given of a meeting of the State Executive council.
  3. An annual emergency Meeting of the state council may be summoned within the shortest possible time required to assemble a quorum for the consideration of an urgent matter.
  4. Accidental Omission to give notice to or the non-receipt of notice of notice by any person entitled to receive such a notice shall not invalidate the proceedings of a meeting.

9.   Quorum

  1. No business shall be transacted at any State Branch (NMA) General or Emergency Meeting unless a quorum is formed at the time when the meeting proceeds to business.
  2. Thirty (30) financial members present shall constitute such a quorum for the General or Emergency Meeting.

10.   Voting

  1. At any General Meeting a resolution put to vote at the meeting shall be decided by a simple majority of the members present and voting.
  2. Voting shall be by show of hands at the Executive council as well as the General Meeting.
  3. Only financial members shall vote and be voted for any state office.
  4. In case of a tie, the Chairman shall have a casting vote.

11.   The State Executive Council

There shall be a state executive council. The state Executive council her-in-after referred to as the council shall be the governing body of the association and shall have full powers to act on its behalf.

12.   Compositions and Powers of Council

  1. Council shall consist of:
    • All elected state Officers
    • Chairman and Secretary of each zone
    • Immediate past Chairman
    • Immediate past Secretary
  2. Quorum of the Council shall be seven members of the Council two of which shall be the Chairman (or vice chairman) the Secretary ( or Assistant secretary or Publicity secretary).
  3. The Council may co-opt any member to any of its deliberations but such a member shall have no vote.
  4. The council shall have powers to appoint a legal practitioner on an honorarium to advice on all legal matters. The tenure of such a legal adviser so appointed shall expire with the end of life of each Executive council.
  5. Council shall have power to make bye laws for the association which shall be circulated to members before the next Genera Meeting. Such bye laws shall be ratified or if unaccepted nullified by the General Meeting.
  6. Council shall have powers to appoint standing Committees and other Ad-hoc Committees as need arises. Nothing in this sub-section shall be construed to preclude the right of the general house in exercising this function where it so desires.

13.   Officers of the State Nigerian Medical Association (NMA)

  1. Composition 
    • Chairman
    • Vice Chairman
    • Secretary
    • Assistant Secretary
    • Financial secretary
    • Treasurer
    • Publicity and Information Secretary
    • Social secretary
  2. Any vacancies which occur during the course of the year, if deemed necessary by the executive Council shall be filled by the council and such be filled by the Council and such appointment shall be for the life of the Executive council.
  3. The term of all officers shall be for one year which is renewable. No member shall hold the same office for more than two consecutive years.

14.   Duties of the State Officers

Chairman

The chairman shall preside over all state associations General Emergency Council Meetings. He shall be the Chief Spokesman of the association. The Chairman in consultation with the executive Council shall interpret the rules and regulations and any bye laws and decide any doubtful points. The Chairman shall cause all Association meetings to be summoned by the Secretary.
  
Vice Chairman

He shall assist the chairman and in his absence act for him. 

Secretary

The secretary shall handle correspondence and shall keep the minutes of the meetings of the Associations and executive Council. He shall arrange with the Chairman the order of proceedings at the meetings. The secretary shall summon the Associations meetings at the direction of the Chairman. The Secretary shall summon supervise and manage the staff at the secretariat. He shall where necessary have an imprest account.

Assistant Secretary

The Assistant secretary shall assist the Secretary and in his absence act for him.

Financial Secretary

The Financial Secretary shall keep records of all the financial activities and revenues of the Associations and shall from time to time as directed by the Executive Council or the General Meeting reconcile such records with the treasurer’s record. He shall submit his records for Auditing when required. He shall collect all monies due to the Association and shall pay same to the Treasurer within seven days of all receipts. He shall present an audited account at the Annual General Meeting.  

Treasurer

He shall receive all monies due to the Association through the financial secretary and pay same into the accounts of the Association within 72 hours of all receipts. He shall make all payments ordered by the general Meeting or the Executive council. He shall keep an account of all such receipts and payments and shall present treasure’s report at the Annual General Meeting.

Publicity and Information Officer

He shall publicise all authorised activities, news, etc of the Association. He shall be the head of information bureau, to collect pieces of information that have any bearing on NMA, process and document same properly and pass these on to the Executive Council for appropriate action.

Social Secretary

He shall superintend all social activities of the associations.

15.   Election of State Officers

  1. Elections of State officers shall be carried out at least once a year in accordance with the provisions of the constitution.
  2. The Chairman shall nominate a returning Officer whose only duty shall be to conduct elections according to laid down rules.
  3. The chairman shall, in pursuant to the nomination of the Returning Officer dissolve the Executive Council.
  4. All main Officers of the Association shall be elected at the Annual General meeting. Voting shall be by secret ballot.
  5. Only Financially up to date members shall be eligible to be elected into offices of the State Nigerian Medical Association.
  6. Financially up to date members shall be construed to mean any member who is not more than one year in arrears, in levies, dues and subscriptions.

16.   Removal from Office

Any officer of the State Nigerian Medical association Executive Council found wanting shall be removed by a motion supported by two thirds majority of financial members present at the General or Emergency Meeting. However, such officer shall be given a chance to defend himself.

17.   Committees

There shall be the following committees.

  1. Ethics and Disciplinary
  2. Business and Finance
  3. Publicity and Awareness
  4. Continuing Medical Education
  5. Social
  6. Welfare
  7. Political
  8. Any other

The State Executive Council shall have the powers to assign the functions of any of these committees to any zone of the State Branch when it desires. Where such assignment is made, the zone shall appoint a committee from amongst its members. List of such a committee shall be forwarded to the State Nigerian Medical Association. The State Nigerian Medical Association however shall not deal directly with such a committee so appointed by assignment to a zone but shall transact all activities relating to such a committee through the zone’s Executive Committee.

17a.   Ethics and Disciplinary Committee

This committee shall be directed by the Executive Council upon receiving complaints or adverse information on any member either directly or through the zone’s executive committee to investigate and deliberate on such a report. The committee shall after due process of hearing recommend such disciplinary measures up to and include (a) Warning letter, (b) Suspension from the Association, (c) Termination of Membership to the State Executive Council. Where a member is not satisfied with the outcome of the committees deliberations and actions of the Executive Council, such a member shall have leave to appeal to the National Body of NMA. For the purpose of clarity, an act of indiscipline shall be defined as an act which has been adjudged by Enugu State Branch of The Nigerian Medical Association based on acceptable professional ethics to have brought the profession into disrepute.

17b.   Business and Finance

This committee shall be responsible for all business ventures, the Association may want to participate in. This committee shall be responsible for consideration of the Executive Council’s Annual Budget. It shall also advise on Medical Protection for the members. It shall also advise do all other such things as may be requested by the Executive council.

17c.   Publicity and Awareness

This committee shall through lectures, symposia, electronic media and other publicity channels project the good image of the Association. It shall encourage interaction among doctors, medical students and other allied health professionals towards the full understanding and realisation of the Association’s aims and objectives.

17d.   Continuing Medical Education

This Committee shall be responsible for all academic activities of the Association. This will include lectures, symposia, clinic-pathologic conference etc. It shall have the right to organise and publish medical newsletter and/ or Medical Journals.

17e.   Social Committee

This committee shall be responsible for handling all social activities of the Association as directed by the State Executive Council. 

17f.   Welfare Committee

This committee shall be responsible for the welfare of the members, be it problems at work or societal problems provided such problems are duely reported to the Association assistance sought by the members. This committee shall encourage members to participate in the death benefit scheme of State NMA.

17g.   Political Committee

This committee shall use all legitimate means to seek to influence sensitive government positions, decisions, and appointments in so far as such actions and policies affect the interest of the State Nigeria Medical Association as a body.

18.   Absence from Committee and Council Meetings

Any member of the Executive Council and / or of any of the committees duely notified of any of the Council or Committee Meetings and who absents himself from two-consecutive meetings of the Council or Committee without obtaining clearance from the Chairman of the relevant meetings shall be deemed to have vacated his post. The Chairman of the Council shall determine either to reassign such a member’s duty within the existing members of the Executive Council or call for a bye election. The Chairman of any of the other committees shall report the absence and application of the provisions above to the Chairman of the Executive Council and where there is still a minimum of five members in the committee, no replacement of such a vacated post shall be necessary.

Council and Committees are hereby authorised to co-opt with members of the Association for specific duties from time to time and as the need arises.

19.   Finances

Sources of Fund

  1. Annual subscriptions/Practising fees/dues
  2. Levies
  3. Donations
  4. Endowments
  5. Loans
  6. Any other legitimate sources

The Executive Council shall suggest the amount; the General Meeting shall have powers to ratify/to fix amount payable by members.

Banking

The Association shall maintain at least one current Account in any Commercial Banks in the Enugu State and any cheques drawn against the Associations Account shall be signed by any two of the following:-

A. Chairman

B. Secretary

C. Treasurer

All payments must be approved by the Chairman or the Executive Council. The Association shall if and when necessary maintain such other accounts as savings, Fixed Deposit, Bond, Stocks and any other for the benefit of the Association.  

20.  Trustees

  1. There shall be five (5) trustees for The State Nigerian Medical Association. They are to be known as the Registered Trustees of the Nigerian Medical Association Enugu State Branch.
  2. Only fully paid up members shall be eligible for appointment as Trustees.
  3. The Executive Council shall nominate and recommend the five trustees who shall be ratified or rejected by the General Meeting. Where the General Meeting rejects the nomination, it shall proceed to nominate and ratify its nominees. 
  4. A trustees shall hold office for 5 years, renewable, but shall cease to hold office if he:
    • Resigns his office
    • Ceases to be a member of the Association
    • Becomes insane
    • Is officially declared bankrupt
    • Is convicted of a criminal offence by a court of competent Jurisdiction
    • Is removed by the Annual General Meeting by a motion supported by a two-third majority vote of the members present and voting.
    • Upon a vacancy occurring in the number of trustees, the Executive Council shall where necessary appoint another eligible member of the Association to act until the next Annual General Meeting when such appointment shall be discussed, ratified or rejected.

21.   Auditors

Auditors shall be appointed at the Annual General Meeting. They shall be charged with general duty of auditing the books and accounts of the Association which shall be kept in proper form by the financial secretary and the treasurer. Such books and accounts shall be audited at least once a year and a report thereon submitted to the Annual General Meeting.

The Association may appoint external auditors where necessary and the remuneration shall be determined by the association. 

22.   Miscellaneous Provisions

Death of a Member

  1. Where a financial member dies, the Association shall have definite obligations towards the burial of such a member.
  2. On death of a member, the chairman and secretary of the zone shall obtain all necessary information regarding the burial arrangements from the family of the deceased member.
  3. Owing to the vast extent of the State, the State executive Council hereby empowers the zones to make all necessary burial arrangements of a departed member in their zones.
  4. The State Nigerian Medical Association shall however send a delegation to join the zone. The delegation shall be at least seven members of the Executive Council which must include the Chairman or his Vice, the Secretary or his assistant or their nominees.
  5. The State Nigerian Medical Association shall pay for and lay a wreath at the grave side.
  6. A funeral oration at the grave side shall be rendered on behalf of the association by a member of the Association.
  7. The State Nigerian Medical Association shall take a quarter (1/4) page newspaper obituary announcement in any one of the newspapers freely circulated in the State of Anambra.
  8. A radio announcement of the death and burial arrangements and a call for attendance on the Nigeria Medical Association members shall be taken out a day or two before the burial.                                                                                                                                        
  9. Without prejudice to participation of a departed member in the benefit scheme, the State Nigerian Medical Association shall present a crossed cheque of ₦2,500.00 (two thousand five hundred naira) to the next of kin, as indicated in the member’s membership data form. The death benefit to the participants.
  10. Upon death of a member, a funeral levy of ₦15.00 (fifteen naira) to be paid by each member of the State Nigerian Medical Association shall become effective. It shall be the responsibility of each zonal executive Committee to collect and transmit to the state Nigerian Medical the funeral levy.
  11. Each zone shall have the rights to make additional funeral arrangements for departed member of their zone.
  12. There shall be a retaining fee of ₦5.00 (five naira) funeral levy by the zone in which a departed member had maintained his membership.
  13. To avoid frequent and tortuous process of amendments of clauses22(i) j-i of this ‘rules and regulations’, the executive council shall have the powers to determine appropriate funeral levies provided that at all times and at whatever amount, the zone shall retain one third of the funeral levy.
  14. The State Nigerian Medical Association through its welfare Committee shall organise a death benefit scheme. The Committee shall have the right to make recommendations to the General Meeting and in particular the participants on the conduct of the scheme. The General Meeting shall have the final say on the conduct of such a scheme or any other. 

Legal Assistance

The state Nigerian Medical Association shall encourage its members to join a Medical protection Association. Without prejudice to the above the State Nigerian Medical Association shall assist its members in all legal matters emanating from their practice of medicine and dentistry. The nature and the extent of the assistance shall be determined by the Executive Council upon request by a member.

23.   Special Provisions

  1. Income and real property of the State Nigerian Medical Association shall not be donated to any religious organisations.
  2. The State Nigerian Medical Association shall indemnify any of its members who is authorised to act on its behalf against any liability incurred by him in defending any proceedings, whether civil or criminal preferred against the State Nigerian Medical Association or its members.
  3. No member of the State Nigerian Medical Association except payment for out of pocket expenses or authorised legitimate expenses incurred while carrying out the functions of the State Nigeria Medical Association.
  4. The State Nigerian Medical Association shall repay all loans including interest borrowed from any of its members.  

24.   Amendment

Amendment to any portion of this ‘’Rules and Regulations’’ by any member or group of members shall be sent in writing not later than three months before an Annual General Meeting through the secretary.

The secretary shall give notice in writing to all members through their zonal Executive Committee, stating the proposed amendments at least six weeks before the Annual General Meeting by a two third majority of members present and entitled to vote.

25.   Transitional Provisions

  1. All directives made under the old constitution shall remain in force until new directives are made under the provision of this ‘Rules and Regulations’.
  2. From the date when these Rules and Regulations come into effect any other Rules and Regulations of the Association by whatever name called shall cease to have effect.
  3. Notwithstanding the provisions of clause (ii) above, all acts done under provisions of the ‘’Rules and Regulations’’ revoked by this ‘’Rules and Regulations’’ shall have affect as if they are done under the provision of this ‘’Rules and Regulations’’.

26.   Effective Date

This bye law was adapted from the old Anambra State NMA which is effective from this day it was passed by a resolution of the General Meeting at EBONYI HOTEL, Abakaliki on 12th day of April, 1989. It is adopted by the Enugu State NMA from the date Enugu State was created from the defunct Anambra state in August 27th 1991.