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Mombasa health workers' unions withdraw strike notice after deal

Thursday July 02 2020
msa

A health worker at TUM sanitises flasks of tea used by colleagues who are treating Covid-19 patients in Mombasa. Health workers in Mombasa County have suspended a recently issued strike notice for 30 days. PHOTO | LABAN WALLOGA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

By WACHIRA MWANGI

Health workers in Mombasa County have suspended a recently issued strike notice for 30 days, paving way for the county to implement the agreement reached on addressing their grievances.

The Kenya National Union of Nurses (KNUN), Kenya Union of Clinical Officers (KUCO), Kenya National Union of Medical Laboratory Officers (KNUMLO) and Kenya Health Professionals Society (KHPS) held a meeting with the county government of Mombasa and the Labour office prior to the expiry of the strike notice.

“We have been talking to them and eventually we reasoned out and agreed on the pertinent issues,” Mombasa County Secretary Dennis Lewa said.

MOU

In a memorandum of agreement between the unions and the county government, it was resolved that a comprehensive promotions proposals considering all common cadres according to scheme of service, managerial positions and staff retiring over the next five years be prepared.

The county agreed to implement promotions in phases with the first one taking effect from July 1.

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According to the MoU, a detailed report will be ready within seven days which will be shared with the conciliator and the unions.

“Phase II of promotions shall be from January 2021 to June 2021 on competitive positions according to respective scheme of service,” read the agreement.

The parties also agreed to have salaries accorded preferential treatment. The county will pay June salaries by July 10 latest.

STATUTORY DEDUCTIONS

 On non-remittance of statutory deductions, the county was asked to adhere to the provisions of Section 19 (4) and (5) of the Employment Act, 2007.

It was agreed that the health workers will have a temporary one month (for July 2020) cover with the NHIF.

On Covid-19 risk allowance for essential service workers, the county government was tasked to follow up on the payments with the National Treasury which had agreed to pay the same for the months of April, May and June 2020.

“Ways of appreciating and motivating staff will be discussed internally. A report on how and when the same will be paid will be ready in seven days and will be shared with the unions and the labour office by July 8,” read the agreement.

The health workers’ unions had threatened to strike over promotions and re-designation, perennial salary delays, non-remittance of statutory deductions and insurance premiums, comprehensive insurance cover, Covid-19 risk allowance and pension.

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