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KMPDU Sec Gen Davji Atellah injured during Nairobi protest

The Kenya Medical Practitioners Pharmacists Dentists Union (KMPDU) Secretary General, Davji Atella, sustained injuries during a protest in Nairobi today.

The incident occurred during a peaceful march organised by medical interns demanding immediate posting from the Ministry of Health (MOH) to the Treasury.

According to a statement by Aggrey Awajo, Moi University Interns representative, Atella was struck by a teargas canister, resulting in severe scalp injuries.

He is currently receiving treatment at Nairobi Hospital. Additionally, two other unposted interns suffered injuries due to the indiscriminate use of teargas.

The protest was organized in response to the delayed posting of more than 3,000 medical students who are yet to secure internships several months after graduation.

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In a letter addressed to the Regional Commander on Tuesday, February 27, Atella informed them of the planned protest and requested assistance in maintaining order and ensuring the safety of all participants.

“We call on all interns to come out in numbers and fight impunity. No one cares when you wallow desperately for months or years without posting… We must show up collectively in one voice and demand the letters now,” Atella said.

The demonstration follows a warning from doctors on January 31 of a potential three-day strike due to concerns over the criteria for absorbing medical interns.

Atellah, leading the press briefing on that occasion, set a one-month deadline for the Ministry of Health to address the issue by hiring interns.

Failure to do so would result in doctors nationwide initiating strike action.

“We write to inform you of our intention to conduct a peaceful procession concerning the delayed posting of medical interns and the payment of fees for postgraduate students. The procession is scheduled to take place on Thursday, 29th February 2024, commencing at 9:30 am,” Atellah said earlier.