• May 19, 2024
  • Last Update May 19, 2024 2:15 PM
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Nurses in Busia threaten to join doctors in countrywide strike

Nurses in Busia threaten to join doctors in countrywide strike

Busia,

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

KNA by Salome Alwanda

Nurses in Busia County have threatened to down their tools by the end of this week and join doctors in their ongoing industrial action.

Led by their Secretary General, Dr. James Emusugut, the nurses said that they have engaged the County government on the issue of salary arrears for long, but the County leadership has failed to honour the bargain.

“We talked to them and they promised to honour our agreement within three months, failure to which we would continue with the strike,” said Dr. Emusugut.He added that the County leadership did not address the grievances, forcing the nurses to down their tools again.

“It is the County government that rushed to court again, to stop the strike and the court ruled that our grievances be addresses,” he said, adding that the Court Order has not been honoured to date.

The National Secretary General of the Kenya National Union of Nurses, Seth Panyako, reiterated the need for the County government to address the nurses’ grievances.

Panyako stated that the strike is legal and the Union has followed due process, including obtaining a Court Order.“So I am here to tell the County government of Busia that we are not going to relent in our strike, until our issues have been addressed,” he said.

However, Busia Deputy Governor, Arthur Odera, stated that they inherited a big number of nurses, who were due for promotion from the former Administration.

“Now we are forced to process 900 promotions, which should have been carried out much earlier,” he said.

Odera who doubles-up as the County Executive (CEC) Member for Health, further stated that despite delays in disbursement of funds to the County by the National Treasury, the County was committed to paying the salary arrears being claimed by the nurses.

“We are now four months’ delayed in disbursement of funds from the National government, but this month, we have committed to pay part of the arrears,” he said, adding that the arrears arose from the 2021 nurses’ strike.

The decision by the nurses to down their tools will add suffering to patients visiting public health facilities since it will run parallel to the doctors strike, which has entered its 30th day.

Courtesy; KNA

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