NO, THANK YOU! Doctors say no to Uhuru’s 40% pay hike

The ongoing doctors’ strike is set to worsen the already bad situation at public health facilities following a move by the medics to reject a 40% pay hike awarded to them by the government.

The doctors, through their umbrella body – Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists Union (KMPDU), declined the award by the government insisting that they will only resume duty once a Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) signed in 2013 is implemented in full.

On Wednesday, the doctors and the government failed to reach a deal in a meeting that was convened by President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Led by KMPDU chair, Samuel Oroko, and Secretary General, Ouma Oluga, the medics said they appreciate the offer tabled by the government during a meeting at State House, Mombasa but that was not enough but said they would continue with negotiations with the government.

“The members are appreciative of the President’s offer,” said Oluga.

“We shall attend the Treasury meeting at midday.”

Chairman Oroko noted that the key issue was not on pay rise but the implementation of the 2013 CBA.

“The issue is not increase in salaries or allowances but the implementation of the CBA,” said Oroko.

“We will not be distracted from discussing the issue since the CBA is more than just the money.”

He said that once the CBA is accepted as the basis of the negotiations, the implementation will then be negotiated.

The doctors were meeting at a city hotel to deliberate on the offer tabled by the government but unanimously reached a decision to further push for the implementation of the 2013 CBA.

KMPDU National Advisory Council and the Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) consultants said the basis of the strike is the 2013 CBA and that allowances or offers outside the CBA can be discussed later.

“The document is valid as it was deposited in court, legally signed. All the other offers outside this can be discussed at a later stage,” said Prof Elijah Ogola, on behalf of Consultants.

The government had offered to raise the entry level grade into the public service for doctors to Job Group “M” from Job Group “L”, a grade it terms as higher than the normal entry level for other public servants and recognises doctors’ professional training.

The government further says that it offered to raise the Enhanced Emergency Call allowance to Ksh 66,000 from the current Ksh 30,000 for Job Group L; Ksh 72,000 from Ksh 30,000 for Job Groups M-P; and Ksh 80,000 from Ksh 30,000 for Job Groups Q and above.

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