The Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Union (KMPDU) Western branch has issued a seven-day ultimatum to the County government of Kakamega to call an urgent meeting to address issues in their collective bargaining agreement (CBA) pact or else they will down their tools and paralyze operations in all the health facilities across the County.
They have threatened to go on strike if their grievances are not addressed within a period of seven days.
While addressing journalists in a Kakamega hotel, the KMPDU leaders Western branch expressed concern about what they termed as deliberate attempts by the county government of Kakamega to humiliate, frustrate and abuse the doctors’ spirit of good industrial harmony and blatant breach of the CBA signed between them and the administration.
In a statement read by the branch chairman Dr. Antony Akoto, the doctors cited the removal of five doctors from the payroll without any official communication, reason or explanation as one of the reasons for the ultimatum.
He explained that the five are on further studies and thus need their pay complaining that they were warned via SMS to go back on duty or risk being struck off the payroll.
They also said no doctor in the common cadre job group has been promoted for the last four years and that there was lack of goodwill by the Kakamega County government to fully implement the already signed doctors’ CBA as no single CBA implementation meeting had been held as per the Council of governors’ circular of 2oth December 2017.
“Kakamega County should wake up, do more to improve healthcare. We want our Governor to stop neglecting doctors and healthcare workers and purpose to meet us in order to resolve these pending issues,” Akoto stated.
The doctors, however, said they were in full support of the ongoing debate about the formation of Health Service Commission –HSC arguing that this will deal with human resource element in the health sector once and for all.
The medical practitioners have given seven days to the County government to reinstate their five interdicted colleagues to the payroll.
They also want the Kakamega County government to come up with structures and policy guiding the release of doctors for postgraduate training and the County secretary to convene the first CBA implementation committee meeting within the seven days or else they will down their tools.
The Kakamega KMPDU branch chairman was flanked by Dr. Charo Kahindi the branch secretary, Dr. Geoffrey Githinji the liaison officer and Dr. Bennard Wambulwa the Western branch treasurer among other doctors who also called upon the security personnel to move with speed to save the two Cuban doctors who were abducted last month by terror suspects.