Labour court suspends nurses strike

Nurses Union leaders addressing the media./COURTESY

Nairobi, KENYA: The labour court has suspended the ongoing nurses strike for 60 days.

Through a statement sent to newsroom on Tuesday by council of Governors, the court has called off the strike and ordered both parties to attend a conciliation talk initiated by, Labour Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani.

Thereafter, the parties will be expected to file a report to court, where the matter will be mentioned for further directions.

This comes even when Kenya National Union of Nurses (KNUN) have maintained that the strike is still on in 8 counties until demands are met fully.

Addressing members of the fourth estate on Thursday in Nairobi, KNUN Secretary General Seth Panyako noted that,the union shall not engage any further conciliation meetings at the ministry of labour other than on matters touching on Completion of CBA, Grading Structure, Harmonization of salaries and Human Resource Management for health department which should be resolved for a lasting solution.

Panyako authorized branch officials to negotiate with their respective employers with view of agreeing on the implementation of the Return To Work Formula Agreement in respect of enhanced uniform and nursing service allowances.

Meanwhile, nurses working in Nairobi City County government hospitals have reached a deal on a return to work formula after talks with Governor Mike Sonko.

“All your allowances will be paid in the next 48 hours after we get approval from the Controller of Budget. We shall also implement the promotion of nurses as promised. We cannot fight over these issues as our patients suffer in the hospitals,” said Sonko.

Sonko also promised the nurses that his administration will soon hire the unemployed nurses working in county facilities, attributing the delayed recruitment of nurses to technical issues facing the Nairobi County Public Service Board.

The County Government will also harmonize the salaries of the nurses among other issues raised by the nurses.

“We are going to give first priority to the nurses who are in our county facilities when we hire our next lot of nurses,” added the Governor.

“As nurses of this County we will continue to stand with you, what we are asking is you to stand with us during our difficult times. However, we are requesting for the appointment of Director of nursing services where we will be reporting all our issues,” stated nurses Nairobi Union branch Secretary, Eddie Muiruri.