NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 11 – Health services in at least 10 counties have been paralyzed following the ongoing nurses’ strike over delayed allowances, which started last week.
A statement from the Council of Governors indicated that the strike was active in Taita Taveta, Elgeyo Marakwet, Trans Nzoia, Kisumu, Kisii, Homabay, Marsabit, Wajir, West Pokot and Kirinyaga Counties.
Union officials in the affected counties have however remained adamant that they will not return to work until they are paid their uniform and nurses service allowances in full.
As stated in the return-to-work formula that was signed last July, nurses’ uniform allowance was to be enhanced by Sh5,000 annually, while service allowance was to be enhanced by Sh3,000 monthly.
Nurses who under the National Government also joined in the strike affecting services at Mathari Hospital, Spinal Injury, Blood Bank and Airport Services in Nairobi, also demanding for their unpaid allowances.
According to Kenya National Union of Nurses Secretary General Seth Panyako, Machakos, Vihiga, Nairobi, Mombasa, Kwale and Migori are the only counties that have paid nurses their allowances.
Some counties have been served with notice but are not in strike, including Kitui, Nairobi, Meru, Tharaka Nithi, Nyandarua, Nyeri, Kiambu and Baringo.
Samburu, Garissa and Embu County Government officials met with union representatives on Monday and requested for more time so as to allow the conciliation process to continue.
Another 18 counties including Nyamira, Kakamega, Lamu, Nandi, Kajiado, Isiolo and Kilifi among others are yet receive the strike notices.