Nurses strike called off

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By Victor Muyakane/ Beth Nyaga

KBC Radio_KICD Timetable

The Kenya National Union of Nurses  has called off their 10 day strike after signing a recognition agreement with the Council of Governors.

In the new agreement, many of the grievances have been addressed with remaining issues termed as minor and are to be captured in Collective bargaining agreements slated for January 2017.

The Union had this morning turned down an initial agreement presented by the Council of Governors, walking out of a meeting that was meant to negotiate terms for the resumption 0f work of the country’s striking nurses.

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Nurses union secretary General Seth Panyako had accused the Council of Governors of resorting to blackmail the union into calling off the strike before signing an agreement, resulting in the walk out.

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The union’s top leadership had recently clashed over a 7 billion shilling resumption of duties deal offered by the government and signed by a number of officials led by Deputy Secretary General Maurice Opetu  and Chair John Bii.

The disagreement emanated from concerns that the Chair and Deputy SG may have signed an unfair deal and all this without the involvement of the NGC and the Secretary General Panyako.

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This latest update comes in the wake of an order by the Employment and Labour Relations court Judge Helen Wasilwa labeling the health workers strike as illegal and requiring them to return to work.

Meanwhile, consultant doctors at Kenyatta National Hospital and University of Nairobi Medical School have withdrawn all services as the doctors’ union continues to defy calls to return to work.

Addressing the press at KNH Wednesday morning, Professor Omondi Oyoo said the doctors at the hospital will not admit any emergency referral case at the hospital until their demands are meet.

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Professor Oyoo also said the services will remain withdrawn until the government implements the collective bargaining agreement it signed three years ago.

Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists’ Union (KMPPDU) Secretary-General Ouma Olunga in addition said doctors are willing to resume work if the government honors the agreement.

Olunga said the doctors are optimistic the ongoing arbitration spearheaded by ministry of labour will resolve the stalemate.

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