Activities in all public hospitals in Busia County were paralyzed after nurses downed their tools because of an ‘unfulfilled return to work formula agreement’ the County government allegedly failed to implement.
Kenya National Union of Nurses Secretary general Seth Panyako had demanded the promotion of all staff who were due for a promotion and whose arrears’ payment was to be effected on 31st May 2016.
Panyako, while issuing a 14-day strike notice on September 26th, wanted the County government to promote all health workers who held interviews which ought to have been processed by 30th June 2016.
They also wanted the health staff who were employed by the County government and have not been given personal numbers, especially by the Economic Stimulus Programs of 2013, to be issued with personal numbers.
In a quick rejoinder, County Executive Committee Member for Health Dr. Maurice said the union walked out of the tripartite meeting and proceeded with the strike.
Dr. Siminyu said the County had met most demands the union had tabled. They included acquiring personal numbers for former ESP staff and promotion of health workers who were due for a promotion and the promotion letters dispatched to respective employees.
“Currently there are no arrears for any health worker in relation to promotion or delayed salaries as alleged by the Union officials. The list of officers due for promotion was forwarded to the relevant body with the report expected this month,” he said.
Dr. Siminyu said management of all public hospitals is on-going, adding that emergency treatment will be handled at Sub County hospitals since doctors are not on strike.
“Please don’t avoid seeking services at public hospitals because of the strike. Normal services will continue until a solution with the striking nurses is reached,” he said.
He was accompanied by County Secretary Nicodemus Mulaku, Legal advisor Justice Alex Etyang, Chief Officer Health Dr. Asoka Itur and County Public Service Board Secretary Rev. Charles Orodi.