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Striking Nairobi doctors ordered to resume work

By LILLIAN MUTAVI September 15th, 2016 2 min read

The Nairobi County government has ordered striking doctors in the county to resume duty with immediate effect or face disciplinary action.

Speaking at City Hall during a press briefing the County Health Executive, Bernard Muia, asked the striking doctors to return to work or risk being replaced with locums.

“The county government will among other things replace any absent doctors with locums who will be too willing to work for wananchi,”said Dr Muia.

He said that the strike had caused extreme suffering to those seeking health services at the county hospitals.


Dr Muia said the strike was illegal as the Kenya Medical Practitioners Pharmacists and Dentists Union had issued a 14-day strike notice on August 29, 2016 and the county had requested for more time to resolve the issue.

The doctors have been on strike over a spate of issues including non-payment of salaries for the last six months, delayed promotions, and non-remittance of their deductions to the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) for the last eight months.

But according to Dr Muia, the county government and the union held a meeting on September 9, 2016 and resolved that the strike be put off for two weeks to deliberate on the unresolved issues.

“These doctors downed their tools despite the county government having fulfilled parts of the demands and therefore no justification for the strike,” said Dr Muia.


The Nairobi branch of the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentist Union chairman Thuranira Kaugiria said that they will not be cowed to resume work through threats.

“Call them disciplinary action or whatever, let them do what they want, but we will not be cowed by these threats. Until our demands are met we will stay put,”said Dr Kaugiria.

He added that the doctors had suffered enough and had only suspended last year’s strike and had warned to resume if the return to work formula they entered into with the county was not implemented.

Dr Kaugiria said that the demands by the doctors was simple and unless they are met they will wait for the disciplinary action the county is imposing.