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Medics call for resignation of CS Kindiki, IG Koome

Friday, March 1st, 2024 15:06 | By
Central Kenya medics under KMPDU address journalists in Thika, Kiambu County. PHOTO/Mathew Ndung'u
Central Kenya medics under KMPDU address journalists in Thika, Kiambu County. PHOTO/Mathew Ndung'u

Medics in the country have announced countrywide mass action and closure of all hospitals in protest against police harassment and failure by the government to address their plight.

In what could result in a crisis in the health sector, the medics under the Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists, and Dentists Union (KMPDU) took issue with the government for failing to arrest and prosecute the police officer who allegedly attacked their National Secretary General and CEO, Davji Atellah, during a procession in Nairobi on Thursday, February 29.

Davji's injury

Led by Central branch Chairman James Githinji, the medics insisted that they would resume operations once the officer who shot the teargas is arrested and charged in a court of law.

Davji, who was leading a procession of medical interns who are yet to be posted after waiting for more than six months, sustained deep cuts in the forehead after being hit by a teargas canister.

While terming the shooting as a malicious action aimed at ending Atellah’s life, Githinji called for a probe to ensure the perpetrators are brought to justice.

“Health facilities across the country are grappling with an acute shortage of medical personnel. It is for this reason that we are agitating for the posting of some 1,215 medical interns to help reduce the workload in hospitals and improve healthcare service delivery,” Githinji said.

The chairman also pointed out that doctors are aggrieved by the failure of the state to implement the 2017–2021 CBA, noting that the government owes doctors a lot of money.

“As an effort to resist paying, they are shooting our heads to scatter us,” he said.

Calls for Kindiki, Koome resignation

His sentiments were echoed by the Kenya National Union of Nurses, Kiambu Branch Secretary General Hillary Kibiriti, who asserted that the attack on Davji indicated that the Inspector General of Police, Japheth Koome, and Interior Cabinet Secretary, Kithure Kindiki, have failed to instill a work ethic in the service.

“This savage attack on unarmed and defenseless people is senseless and smacks of a regime whose appetite for total control over all institutions is insatiable. The culprit ought to face justice, and IG Koome and CS Kindiki ought to resign for failing to instill work ethics in the service,” stated Kibiriti.

Kibiriti said that Davji’s only mistake was to remind the government of its duty to employ doctors and nurses to serve Kenyans, adding that his injury is an attack on the entire union movement.

They also took issue with heavy taxation, including the 1.5 per cent housing levy and the 2.75 per cent Social Health Insurance Fund (SHIF), saying that the taxation is being implemented in clear contempt of the court order.

Caroline Mwaura and Malit also averred that all medics will resume duty once their cries are heard and acted upon thoroughly by the government.

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