Kenya: Bore Urges Medics to End Strike and Heed Dialogue Call

Nairobi — Labour Cabinet Secretary Florence Bore has urged striking doctors to end the strike and give dialogue a chance for the benefit of Kenyans.

Bore on Friday urged doctors to suspend the strike and negotiate with their employers: the Ministry of Health and the 47 county governments.

She called on the doctors to obey the Employment and Labor Relations Court orders, reiterating that the union must call off the strike and direct its members to return to work.

Bore insisted that the right to strike is not absolute.

"This matter has received attention at the highest level, and we should have faith in each other to resolve the matter once and for all. Once more I appeal to the doctors, clinical officers, and laboratory technicians to give dialogue a chance," Bore said.

Good faith

She explained that the Labour Relations Act of 2007 provides that parties may use a dispute resolution procedure to settle disagreements when they arise.

The CS urged parties to cooperate and act in good faith to settle the issue noting that the Head of Public Service had taken initial steps as ordered by the court.

"Parties must sit and dialogue in good faith. As a ministry, our role is facilitation to promote social dialogue and respect for the rule of law," Bore said.

Bore made the statement amid rising concern over the state of public health institutions.

Some counties issued ultimatums threatening to take disciplinary action against striking health workers including doctors, clinicians and nurses.

Nyeri, Kisumu and Tharaka Nithi threatened to stop payments to doctors participating in the strikes amid defiance by the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Union (KMPDU).

A KMPDU-led including the Kenya Union of Clinical Officers (KUCO) ordered its members to down tool over a stalemate on renumeration of medical interns.

KMPDU has demanded payment of Sh206,000 to intern doctors, rejecting the government offer of Sh70,000.

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