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KNUN urges counties to release salaries for nurses

Kenya National Union of Nurses (KNUN) has urged counties withholding the salaries of the nurses to release it immediately.
Addressing the press in Embu Thursday, Joseph Ngwasi, National chairman of KNUN said several counties including Embu are yet to pay the nurses their March and April salaries.
Ngwasi said due to non-payment of the health workers’ salaries many are suffering and struggling as they fight the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Our members are unable to meet family obligations and also due to delayed salaries they have problems facilitating their travel to work as fare in PSVs has doubled,” observed Ngwasi.
He has also called on the government to harmonise the money that was released by the government as allowances for the health workers adding that all are being exposed to the risks of coronavirus.
“The money should not be directed to one cadre but should be harmonized and shared among all the health workers because all are facing the same enemy- Covid 19,” he added.
He warned that failure to address the issue of harmonising the allowances and the salaries of the nurses will force the nurses to proceed with the strike scheduled for 19th of this month.
Ngwasi noted that the 14-day window period before the strike is for giving room for negotiations after which they will go on strike.
However to solve the frequent strikes by the union, the KNUN chairman urged the government to establish a Health Service Commission where all issues affecting health workers will be addressed.
Aloysius Njoka, Chairman, Kenya Union of Clinical Officers Embu branch blamed County Government of Embu for ignoring the plight of health workers.
He lamented that the county has opened ungazetted covid-19 centers at Kamburu and Thuci area with no essential amenities such as toilets hence subjecting staff working there to suffering adding that the staff are also working long hours.
Njoka further said the current feud between department of public health and of medical services over covid-19 funds is affecting the workers on the ground.
On his part, Felix Fundi, Secretary General, KNUN Medical Laboratory Officers gave an ultimatum of one month to the county government of Embu to have all 160 staff on contract absorbed on permanent basis terming the contract illegal.
By Kimani Tirus

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