Kenyans’ suffering persists as medics’ strike enters day seven

Thursday, November 7th, 2019 04:20 |

Hundreds of patients across the country continue  to suffer following the ongoing clinical officers’ strike.

The medics downed tools,  citing government’s failure  to honour their collective bargaining agreement (CBA).

With the strike entering its seventh day today, the  Kenya Union of Clinical Officers (KUCO) chair Peterson Wachira accused National and County governments of deliberately mishandling their 2017 deal.

Wachira said they met Ministry of Health officials on Monday but their meeting failed to bear fruit. 

The union’s attempts to meet the parliamentary Health committee and the Public Service Commission yesterday hit a snag as anti- riot police lobbed tear gas canisters to disperse them at Uhuru Park, saying the group would cause disturbance near Parliament.

“It’s very unfortunate that patients will have to wait more for us to attend to them, but we have no choice. The government has deliberately chosen to frustrate us,” said Wachira.

“Since 2017, we have held a lot of talks with the government but its sad that despite the numerous talks, the government has failed to honour the CBA,” he added.

Effect promotions

The official said the clinical officers are the backbone of the universal health coverage. 

“We should be empowered more to ensure our President has left a legacy that will see the health sector in completely transformed,” he said.

The workers also want all pending promotions and re-designation effected, saying most members have stagnated in one job group for more than 10 years despite professional and academic advancement. 

They also cited understaffing given that the country has about 7,000 clinical officers while a study by the Health ministry last year recommends 24,000.

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