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Mailu and Muraguri clash publicly over medics strike

Health CS Cleopa Mailu and PS Nicholas Muraguri when they appeared before the Senate Health Committee members. (Photo: Boniface Okendo/Standard)

The differences between Health Cabinet Secretary Cleopa Mailu and his Principal Secretary Nicholas Muraguri played out in public Wednesday.

The two differed over how the ministry constituted the committee that has been engaging the doctors’ union to end the two-month strike.

Dr Mailu clashed with Dr Muraguri before the Senate’s Health Committee. The CS refuted claims by his junior that they had discussed the PS’s decision to change the names of the negotiators who were to represent the ministry in the talks with the representatives of doctors’ union.

When he appeared before the committee on Tuesday, Mailu accused Muraguri of insubordination, revealing how the PS ignored a decision he had made of appointing him as the leader of the ministry’s negotiation team, and instead appointing another officer to replace him.

But when the two appeared before the committee yesterday, Muraguri said he had held discussions with his boss, a claim Mailu dismissed as false.

“In this matter, there was a direction that I lead the ministry’s negotiation team. I had a discussion with the CS on how better to optimise the team. It was a competent team, and we agreed on the matter. My memo was only finalising the process that I thought we had agreed upon,” said Muraguri as he apologised for what he termed as “perceived” infighting within the ministry

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But Mailu replied: “I want it to be on record that at no time did we discuss the change of names with the PS. We have mandates, which are given through appointment letters and respective authorities and that is what we should work with.”

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