Tana River health workers protest over allowances

Tana River heath workers staging a protest over payment of allowances. PHOTO: COURTESY.

Tana River, KENYA: Health workers strike across Tana River County on Tuesday entered its second day, with them demonstrating over pending allowances.

Speaking to the media, chairman for association of public health officers in the county Raphael Gwiyo alleged that the county government had let them down after failing to fulfill their promises.

The chairman said that the county government had promised to pay the health workers’ dues in the course of last week but never did so.

On Monday, the demonstration started from the Hola County hospital which was the meeting point of all clinical officers, public health officers with other cadres.

The agreed plan was to make sure the workers were to see none other than the governor himself in order to get directives from the horse’s mouth.

According to Gwiyo,County Secretary Mr. Abdu Godana Dae had ignored their outcry, lamenting that instead of trying to find a solution before it could worsen, he decided to cut off communication unreasonably.

“We waited for the county secretary until he came at around 5:00 pm we talked and he promised us he would meet us by Tuesday or Wednesday of last week. After we had prepared to meet him on Tuesday he failed, saying he had traveled but he communicated later that he would meet us on Wednesday at 9:00 am. When we went to his office he said he was busy due to the US ambassador’s visit but after that we could neither see him nor get him through phone. That’s why we have decided to come here to hear from governor himself,” Mr. Gwiyo said.

The Chairman insisted that if they won’t be able to see him (the governor) they will continue camping at his office without any service delivery at the county hospitals even if the strike would last for a month or so.

The chairman added that the government should consider all the workers indiscriminately, saying clinical officers with other workers are supposed to be paid their allowances  just like the nurses.