Vihiga Senator Gorge Khaniri has today expressed deep reservations on the state of healthcare in Vihiga County after Health workers went on strike. In a statement seen by this writer, Khaniri has termed the situation in Vihiga as ‘disturbing’
“I am deeply disturbed by the collapse of healthcare services in Vihiga County yesterday which was triggered by a countywide strike by health workers.”
The senator has claimed that Vihiga people are suffering and that this is a serious violation of their rights. “Our people across the county are suffering a great deal because they are unable to access services in public health institutions, which is a serious violation of their basic and constitutional right to access to quality and timely healthcare.” Read the statement in Part.
Khaniri further said that:
“I am appropriately briefed about the major grievances by the health workers, and where a common compromise has not been reached between them and the county executive which is their employer. It is unfortunate to note that whenever conflicts of this nature arise between employer and employees it is the poor residents who often bear the painful consequences of such stand-off.
The contention over unpaid salaries and allowances for several months and the thorny issue of staff promotions has been a subject matter whose negotiations between the county executive and health workers’ unions have failed to bear fruits for several years now despite the petition to the county government way back in 2019 seeking implementation of a progressive process of promoting staff in various cadres in the healthcare department.
I wish to state that we shall not sit and watch as our people suffer over issues which can be resolved amicably. The county executive’s duty is bound to ensure residents access services irrespective of whatever dispute is happening between the executive and the health workers.
I am calling upon the executive under the leadership of the governor and the health executive CECM to move with speed and convene a forum with health workers’ representatives with a view to avoid such stalemate in the future.
I also urge our health workers to be flexible and find a common ground with the executive so that crucial services in our hospitals are not interfered with”