MPs now demand sauna, jaccuzi to be fixed in House

Friday, August 13th, 2021 06:00 |
Kenya’s National Assembly in session. Photo/PD/File

Kenyan lawmakers are now pushing for incorporation of saunas and jacuzzis in Parliament to enable them perform their duties in a more relaxed manner.

In a move that could only shock the already overburdened tax payer, the lawmakers want the establishment of a state-of-the-art health and wellness facilities normally available at major hotels and spas.

They say a bid to reduce stress and rejuvenate their purportedly overworked minds and bodies, the lawmakers want the said health facilities furnished with clinical and public health sections equipped with the latest medical diagnostic machines.

The new health facility, to be run by a new autonomous body, the Parliamentary Health Services Unit (PHSU) will replace the current health club MPs say is obsolete.

A report tabled in Parliament says the new unit is meant to motivate lawmakers and parliamentary staff to perform well in their duties by maintaining their physical and psychological health.

Health facility

The report is a product of the Committee on Services and Facilities chaired by Nyaribari Masaba MP Ezekiel Machogu.

The health facility to be situated within Parliament, would also have steam baths to enable the lawmakers execute their constitutional duties  effectively and efficiently.

“The Parliamentary Service Commission (PSC) should facilitate the refurbishment and renovation of the current health club in compliance with the protocols and guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health on containment of Covid-19 and that the budget that was meant for outsourcing health club services be channeled towards the setting up of the health and wellness unit,” the report.

The report says the decision has been arrived at as a result of the reluctance by the MPs to services from outsourced health clubs due to the fear of their privacy being breached.

“For effective resumption of the health club services, the proposed renovations and refurbishment should be completed. 

PSC should refurbish the current health club in compliance with the protocols and guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health on containment of Covid,”it adds.

The new ultra-modern health club will be fitted with a massage room, steam baths and saunas that will have the latest model of the steam generating systems in the gents and ladies’ washrooms.

Walls and sittings of the saunas will be replaced with a modern heat generating system.

A maintenance and service contract will be put in place to service the steam baths and saunas.

Club will also have a barber and salon areas as various hair washing points in the ladies will be created and work stations at gents.

In addition, the gents and ladies’ washrooms will have manicure, pedicure and reflexology stations.

Further changing areas will be fitted with rails for purposes of hanging personal clothes and towels, while wooden chairs will be replaced with plastic and washable ones.

To create space for massage rooms, all cupboards, clutter and partitions in the ladies’ area will be removed to enable air circulation while the room will be painted with washable paint.

On paintings, all the areas of the health club will be painted with washable paints while the rooms will be installed with a new air conditioning system with hype filters.

All the electric systems will be repaired and loose sockets installed with new ones while firefighting equipment will be installed.

  Bathrooms and toilets on the other hand will be renovated, as gypsum, showerhead ceilings and all leakages will be sealed while toilets will be made Muslim friendly.  

“PSC should consider putting the staff deployed to the current health club with massage, reflexology on a five-year term contract, renewable once upon satisfactory performance,” adds the report

According to the committee, the reception area of the club should have an electronically controlled door, health check unit, Internet connectivity, sanitisation and hand-washing unit while the gymnasium area should be replaced with a modern, durable and washable floor.

Safe environment

 In its justification for the creation of the PHSU, the committee explained that although PSC is committed towards the welfare of the members and staff through the provision of a comprehensive medical scheme, there is evidence regarding the burden of disease attributable to the environment and non-communicable disease that has led to the poor health of workers, which necessitates the creation of wellness programmes to cater for health risk assessments and screenings.

“Through the wellness programme, the aim is to enhance the health of members and staff of Parliament that will ultimately increase productivity as well as provide a healthy and safe work environment that will support employees’s health and well being,” adds the report.

 This is not the first time that MPs have made outrageous demands.

  In 2018, the lawmakers protested over alleged poorly prepared food served in Parliament’s cafeteria and demanded that the services be outsourced to have them enjoy Five-Star Hotel services.

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