“Striking Doctors Will Not Be Paid,” Anyang’ Nyong’o

By Lauryne Akoth

Kisumu Governor Professor Anyang’Nyongo has affirmed that Doctors on Strike will not get paid.

In a press release dated 11th April 2024, the county boss noted that despite regular engagements with the Kenya Medical Practitioners Pharmacists and Dentists (KMPDU) Nyanza branch, through the CBA implementation committee, doctors have opted to down their tools.

Anyang’ Nyong’o observed that following the industrial action notice filed by KMPDU on March 6, 2024, due to non-compliance with the 2017 CBA, the Kisumu County government evaluated the raised concerns and acknowledged significant adherence to most matters.

Kisumu Governor Professor Peter Anyang’Nyong’o

He emphasized that the Kisumu County government had significantly tried to address issues raised in the CBA with meetings between both parties held progressively; four in 2022, eight in 2023, and two in 2024.

The governor highlighted the issues addressed by his government in the CBA including the enrollment of all county government employees in a comprehensive medical scheme, the recruitment of doctors annually in recent years;14 doctors in 2021, 10 doctors in 2022, and a further 8 in 2023.

Additionally, he stated that doctors have continuously been released for further studies based on training needs and a realistic assessment of capacity done to replace them.

Moreover, he mentioned that the promotion of healthcare workers including doctors has been ongoing and that the county has effected promotions in 2016, 2019, and 2022, with the most recent promotion letters issued in March 2024.

Three additional issues his government addressed include the payment of salaries on time with contingency plans in place in case of a delay from the national treasury, issuance of a circular for all staff to access Mortgage and Car Loan Schemes, and lastly, the finalization of interviews for senior consultants is currently underway.

He however noted that the posting of interns is beyond the county’s scope of engagement.

Doctors Holding Demonstrations in Nairobi County

According to the statement, the county’s cabinet held a meeting whereby four resolutions were reached.

The county resorted to withholding payment for services not offered by the doctors on strike according to the Labour Relations Act. It was also agreed that the county would urgently employ doctors on short-term contracts.

“To address the current situation, especially at JOOTRH where doctors on postgraduate training have withdrawn their services, the County will urgently employ doctors on short-term contracts to ensure the provision of essential healthcare services to our community using the savings made,”

“Additionally, all health workers undergoing specialty training in Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital (JOOTRH) will henceforth be required to establish service level agreements with the hospital. This measure aims to ensure predictability and clear accountability for service delivery.” Read the statement in part.

Anyang’Nyong’o assured that his government is committed to addressing challenges in collaboration with health workers and relevant stakeholders.

He also urged all stakeholders to prioritize dialogue to find solutions that will prioritize health and the welfare of the community.

Aerial view of Kisumu City