Clinical officers to go on strike Friday

Clinical officers have said they will down their tools from Friday to demand better pay and promotions.

They said they are being treated as clerical officers yet they are diligent workers running the public health sector.

“We are the major stakeholders in the health system. We are custodians of primary health care in this country. Our wages must reflect the same,” said Erick Ondieki, National secretary, Kenya Clinical Officers Association.

Speaking to the Nation on Sunday in Kisumu, representative of clinicians from 13 counties from Western region said all members will down their tools if nothing solid will have been sealed.

The counties include Kisumu, Vihiga, Busia, Siaya, Bungoma, Homa Bay, Kisii, Nyamira, Kericho, Kakamega, Bomet, Migori and Trans Nzoia.

“It is becoming clear that our national leaders are being engaged in mock negotiations, as no deal has been solidified to this far. We are demanding what is rightfully ours.

“Most of the public hospitals in the country are being managed by clinical officers and you know what it means if we join our colleagues on the street. We have bailed out the government and the public from extreme suffering and they want to treat us as drivers,” said Mr Vincent Owaa, Kisumu County representative of clinical officers.

He accused the Salary and Remuneration Commission of being reluctant to sign the agreement that would see that they are added more allowances.

“Why is the commission that they need more time to revise our allowances, what of the MPs and MCAs why were they added in one sitting?” he asked.

He said the SRC has grouped them with clerks and supplementary staffs in job group C1

“The only expression of goodwill that we can trust is by addressing our grievances and presenting a signed commitment for immediate remittance of the benefit agreed upon by all the parties.

He said the national and county governments should address their grievances, which ranges from discrimination in internship allowances, remuneration, employment, promotions and harmonization of salaries.

“Our interns should be paid while they are offering their services to the hospitals and we also want our diploma holders to be treated well because our diploma is not just an ordinary diploma,” said Mr Owaa

He said since the beginning of the doctors’ strike, clinical officers have been forced to do extra work.

“Since the strike begun, reproductive clinicians have been performing successful surgeries such as cataract, caesarean, orthopedics, anaesthesia among others. Is that not an important person in the sector?” asked Mr Owaa.

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