Kenya Government releases KSh2.4 billion to facilitate deployment of medical interns.

Head of Public Service Felix Koskei has announced that the government has secured budgetary support totaling KSh2.4 billion to facilitate the deployment of medical interns. Koskei, who also chairs the Whole-of-the-Nation approach committee aimed at resolving the health crisis, made this declaration in a statement released to news outlets on Tuesday evening. According to Koskei, all medical interns are instructed to collect their deployment letters from the Ministry of Health beginning Thursday, April 4.

This development serves as a glimmer of hope for doctors who have been on strike for the past three weeks, advocating for the posting of interns among other grievances. Additionally, Koskei, acting on behalf of the national government, confirmed the clearance of all salary arrears owed by the national government in accordance with the 2017/2021 Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA). He also mentioned the provision of grants and scholarships for eligible postgraduate medical officers.

Koskei emphasized that these actions demonstrate the government’s commitment to addressing the demands of the striking medics, urging them to return to work as negotiations continue. He specifically called upon the leadership of the Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists, and Dentists Union (KMPDU) to adhere to court orders by immediately suspending the ongoing industrial action.

Regarding the issues raised by KMPDU before both county and national governments, Koskei revealed that they had been classified into various categories for discussion. He explained that the Whole-of-the-Nation Approach Committee had identified nineteen distinct issues from the Notice of Industrial Action, categorizing and prioritizing each one and assigning responsibility to relevant tiers of government. Six issues were attributed to the national government’s mandate, nine to county governments, and four were deemed to fall under concurrent jurisdiction.

In a show of solidarity with the doctors, clinical officers and medical lab officers also initiated a strike on Monday of this week.