The Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists’ Union (KMPDU) has announced that its members will embark on a strike on Tuesday, September 12.
In a letter to the Kilimani OCPD, the union’s secretary general, Davji Bhimji, noted that the demonstration will kick off at Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) at 10:00pm.
The procession will make a stop at the Ministry of Health (MoH) offices and end at the Council of Governors (COG) headquarters along Chiromo Road.
“This is to notify you that doctors (consultants, medical practitioners, pharmacists, dentists, registrars, interns, and medical students) in Kenya will be holding a peaceful procession on Tuesday, September 12, 2023 at 10:00am to deliver a petition on the state of Healthcare in Kenya,” read the statement in part.
A photo of the Accident and Emergency entrance at the Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH).
“There are unprecedented shortages of doctors and healthcare workers amidst unemployment and underemployment crisis in both public and private hospitals.”
According to Bhimji, the letter was to request the National Police Service to provide security during the demonstration.
The strike comes at a time several medical practitioners are at loggerheads with county governments over poor remuneration and working conditions.
On Saturday, over 200 medical practitioners in Nakuru issued a 21-day strike notice lamenting poor working conditions.
Led by Bhimji, KMPDU at the time argued that the Nakuru County Government, led by Governor Susan Kihika, had failed to pay doctors according to the stipulated agreement.
“We are seeing doctors being demoted, some salaries reduced by 30%, and yet the county government of Nakuru promised to employ them on permanent and pensionable terms,” lamented Bhimji.
A month ago, Embu medics also threatened to down tools claiming that state hospitals were grappling with staff shortages while medical practitioners were being forced to contend with demeaning contracts and career stagnation.
The KMPDU Secretary General also accused the county of not providing adequate health equipment to the doctors.
“We are not going to be in the business of begging for favours from Counties. It is high time we took action on Embu County’s indifference to doctors’ welfare,” he lamented.
“We cannot negotiate Collective Bargaining Agreements (CBA)s or have career progression guidelines and schemes of services just to gather dust in closets.”
The Kenya Medical Practitioners Pharmacists Dentists Union (KMPDU) Secretary General Davji Atella during an interview on April 17, 2023