Striking nurses accuse SRC of unfair treatment

Wangui Githugo and Henry Andanje @PeopleDailyKe

The Kenya National Union of Nurses (Knun) has accused the Salaries Remunerations Commission (SRC) of being a stumbling block to the implementation of their Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA).

Addressing the hundreds of nurses who held demonstrations in the streets of Nairobi to press for the implementation of the CBA, Knun secretary general Seth Panyako said it was unjustifiable for the SRC to deny the nurses their due and yet it approved the teachers’ and doctors’ perks.

The defiant nurses also accused governors of trying to intimidate them to call off the strike, and vowed to press on until their demands are met. “This is to affirm that the ongoing strike is here to stay and no amount of intimidations, blackmailing, hoodwinking will deffuse the resolve by nurses to push for the signing of their negotiated and agreed CBA by both levels of government,” said Panyako.

He demanded to know why additional allowances were awarded to doctors but have not yet been awarded to nurses. “The doctors were awarded 400 per cent increase during the return-to-work formula hence the reason why this is outright double standards and unfair labour practices,” added Panyako.

Meanwhile, Knun Busia branch chairman Dr Isaiah Omondi said nurses on strike will not resume until their demands are addressed by the county government. Omondi was addressing the press at Busia county governors office’s after holding a peaceful demonstration from the County Referral hospital.

He said some expectant mothers were giving birth on the floor due to shortage of beds. He added that other areas are yet to be addressed by the county government which include promotion of nurses, shortage of nurses and poor working conditions.

“Nurses in Busia County will not resume duty even if the CBA will be signed by Council of governor’s because the county government has not addressed our plight,” he said.

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