Police disperse striking nurses from Afya house

Written By: Carol Kamau
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Police officers had to use teargas canisters to disperse striking Nurses who had camped at the Health Ministry headquarters Afya house.

The protest turned chaotic as the nurses engaged the police in running battles, with the nurses now calling for the resignation of Health CS Cleopas Mailu.

The nurses’ strike which is now in its 4th month has paralyzed services in public health facilities across the country as both the nurses union and government maintain hard-line positions.

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Kenya National Union of Nurses Secretary General Seth Panyako now says they will advocate for the closure of all medical training institutions in the country, until nurses grievances are addressed.

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Union officials from across the Country had marched to Afya house in what they termed as peaceful demonstration to seek audience with Government officials only to be dispersed by police.

Panyako says they are ready for dialogue but warned the Government that they will not succumb to intimidation and call of the strike.

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He said they will fight to the bitter end saying the National and County Governments as well as the salaries and remuneration commission are taking them for a ride.

According to Panyako the move by SRC to categorize nurses as well as Clinical Officers as semi-skilled workers in its recent job evaluation was uncalled for and must be reviewed.

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County Governments have threatened to sack the striking nurses after they ignored ultimatums to report back to work.

Already Murang’a County among others has advertised for the positions, with a majority of the Counties maintaining that the strike is illegal.

In Busia County however Chief Officer for Health and sanitation Akisa Ekisa exuded confidence that the County Government remains committed to address the issues raised by the Nurses and Clinical Officers in a bid to end the strike.

 

 

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