Defiant Governor Anne Waiguru has advertised positions for striking health workers in Kirinyaga.
The county government placed an advert in one of the dailies for positions of doctors, nurses and six dentists as the work boycott entered the second day, paralysing services in all public health facilities.
More than 1,000 striking health practitioners are demanding that more workers be recruited, sanitation in health facilities be improved and members be promoted. They said that the only way to end the stalemate is through dialogue and not intimidation and threats.
“We have seen an advert in one of the dailies, we are sending this message to Governor Anne Waiguru to stop operating from Nairobi and come for dialogue to solve this problem once and for all,” Central region KMPDU general secretary Gor Goody said.
The health workers’ strike got a boost after national officials joined the protests on Thursday afternoon.
Kenya National Union of Nurses secretary general Seth Panyako told journalists its time for the Kirinyaga county to understand the train has already left the station and the unions are not ready to call off the strike unless their demands are met.
“Our demands are simple, increase the number of our staff, improve sanitation in health facilities, give our members promotions since the last time they were promoted was 10 years ago and pay the doctors who are on study leave their 10 months salary,” Panyako said.
Panyako, who spoke in Kerugoya town, said Waiguru was not in touch with problems affecting the health sector in Kirinyaga. He asked the governor not to concentrate on building skyscrapers in the name of medical complexes but provide basic health care.