• KUCO Homa Bay secretary Philip Mbom their ability to serve patients has been affected by failure to address their grievances.
• Mbom spoke to journalists at the Homa Bay County Referral Hospital on Tuesday. He was joined by chairman Steve Omondi and treasurer Felix Ouko.
More than 300 clinicians in Homa Bay have downed their tools because the county government has failed to implement their Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Under the Kenya Union of Clinical Officers (KUCO), the clinicians said the Homa Bay administration had failed to remit statutory deductions to relevant authorities.
They said there were delays in promoting qualified health workers within their cadre and nonpayment of interns.
KUCO Homa Bay secretary Philip Mbom said their ability to serve patients has been affected by the failure to address their grievances.
Mbom spoke to journalists at the Homa Bay County Referral Hospital on Tuesday. He was joined by chairman Steve Omondi and treasurer Felix Ouko.
“This strike will continue until the Homa Bay government honours the agreement. You don’t expect employees to continue with service delivery in unfavourable conditions,” Mbom said.
The strike has affected services at many health facility departments in the county.
Services at the theatre, ear, nose and throat, chest clinic, renal and outpatient departments have been disrupted.
Mbom called on the Council of Governors (CoG) to sign the CBA so that county governments can implement it.
“The employer argues that it cannot act on the CBA unless it is approved by the CoG. Let CoG offer a solution to the problem by signing the agreement,” Mbom said.
According to the medics, clinical officers who have worked for three years should be promoted to a higher job group.
Mbom accused the county government of promoting other health workers but not clinical officers.
“There is a cadre within the medical profession whose officers have been promoted. We want promotions done without discrimination,” he said.
Omondi accused the Homa Bay County Public Service Board of delaying the promotions.
He said that they had channelled a list of officers to the board for promotion but it has not responded.
“Let’s not make working conditions unfavourable for employees because we all need services,” Omondi said.
Ouko questioned why the county government has failed to remit their statutory deductions including National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF).
“The union members are unable to access health care using the NHIF card because the county government deducts our salaries but does not pay for the insurance cover,” Ouko said.
Homa Bay, Health county executive Richard Muga said the administration is aware of the grievances of the health workers.
He said they working on mechanisms to address the matters raised by the workers.
Muga said he has contacted the county finance office to address delayed remittance of statutory deductions.
“We’re working on modalities we have at our disposal to solve some of the problems,” Muga said.
The county government urged clinical officers to suspend their strike as it addresses some of the grievances.
(edited by O. Owino)