17 December 2012

Kenya: Nurses Defy Return-to-Work Order

The striking nurses argue that they have been unable to properly raise their concerns with the government due to lack of a registered nurses trade ... ( Resource: Kenyan Nurses Continue To Strike Amid Promises

Secretary General of the nurses' union Seth Panyako has said the nurses strike will continue despite an order by issued by the minister of Medical Services Anyang' Nyong'o directing nurses to go back to work by 1pm today.

Panyako said that the minister has no right to issue the order, stating that the nurses will only return to work when the government recognises their trade union.

"The minister of medical services has no constitutional mandate to order nurses to go back to work as he has not employed the nurses. Nurses have a right to their own union, enshrined in article 41 of the new constitution and this right cannot be granted by any arm of the government."

"The government should stop playing with the lives of Kenyans in exchange for a few shillings," he added, stating that the nurses will march to Afya House to demand a meeting with Professor Anyang' Nyong'o later today.

Nurses have been on strike since December 3 demanding the recognition of the Kenya National Union of Nurses and the implementation of approved allowances totalling Sh 130,000 per month. The strike has paralysed public hospitals across the country.

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