Trans Nzoia Governor Patrick Khaemba has suspended five senior health department officials over alleged theft of medical equipment.
Among the suspended are senior hospital administrators who, the governor said, would be taken to court.
This comes as the governor admitted that there was a crisis in the health sector following months of pressure from the locals.
Speaking after inspecting the construction of the multi-billion county referral hospital on Friday, the governor said cartels, had siphoned millions of shillings from the health sector, leading to poor service delivery.
He said the cartels had been working with county officials to steal drugs and other medical equipment.
“I am directing that all those people who have been working with the cartels to be suspended forthwith," said Governor Khaemba.
Mr Khaemba added that he would soon overhaul the leadership of the department.
The governor told striking nurses that his government would not heed their demands for a pay increase.
"The strike is illegal and should be called off since there is a court order stopping it. Nurses need to go back (to work) as directed by the court," he said on Friday.
He said the nurses were demanding a pay increase against the approval of the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC).
He said the county would not give the striking nurses any salary increase without approval of the SRC.
"The Constitution mandates SRC to set salaries and allowances for all public servants. Any new allowances must be endorsed by the SRC," he explained.
He accused the Kenya National Union of Nurses of ignoring a court order to call off the strike. He said that he will not negotiate anything with the nurses against the law.
The governor told the striking nurses to go back to work or face disciplinary action.
This comes the nurses’ strike continues to paralyse operations in public health facilities. Patients have been forced to get services from private facilities.