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January 18, 2019

Pay nurses’ perks by end month, union tells county

Elgeyo Marakwet KNUN secretary Benson Biwott in September 11, 2017. /STEPHEN RUTTO
Elgeyo Marakwet KNUN secretary Benson Biwott in September 11, 2017. /STEPHEN RUTTO

Elgeyo Marakwet nurses who took part in a 151-day strike last year have not been paid their allowances, a union official has said.
Kenya National Union of Nurses branch secretary Benson Biwott said on Sunday that 276 nurses have not been paid.
Only 102 nurses were paid the allowances awarded to the health workers at the end of the strike on November 1 last year, he said. The strike started on June 5 last year.
The allowances covered nursing services, extraneous costs and commuting.
Biwott said nurses will sue the county government if it fails to pay the allowances by June 30.
 “We have refused to be discriminated against. We want our allowances paid according to the return-to-work formula that ended the strike last year,” Biwott said.
“The return-to-work formula stated clearly that nurses should be paid their dues without discrimination.”
Biwott said the union will petition the Elgeyo Marakwet assembly to compel the county executive to pay the nurses.
Health executive Kiprono Chepkok urged the nurses to be patient, pledging that all the nurses will receive their allowances before end of the month.
The unionist said nurses are being threatened and randomly transferred to shut them up over the unpaid allowances.
“One person wakes up in the middle of the night and transfers nurses at will. We demand laid down procedures must be followed when effecting transfers,” Biwott said.
“Transfers should not be done in the middle of the year because most of us have schoolchildren. What will happen to our children when you transfer us in the middle of the year?”
He urged the county government to promote nurses, saying a majority of the health workers have not been promoted since 2013.
Biwott said some nurses have gone back to school to further their education but have been denied promotions.


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