COTU-K through our Secretary General Bro. Francis Atwoli has intervened on behalf of Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Union (KMPDU) officials who were facing a one month jail term. The strike which has been on for over 60 days was ruled to be illegal after the council of Governors sued the union and their prayers were granted. However KMPDU decided to press on with the strike and they were cited for being in contempt to the court. While presenting his arguments in court, Bro. Atwoli asked Judge Wasilwa to reconsider her decisions.
“Give us seven more days so that we look at the CBA clauses by clause.”
In his intervention, Atwoli offered to be directly involved in negotiations to end the stalemate in the health sector as the court was set to give the ruling on the application for review.
“Kindly give us more days, specifically seven days and we will endeavor to reach an amicable solution,”
said Atwoli. He added that within the seven days, on a give and take basis a solution will be reached.
Justice Hellen Wasilwa in her ruling said the duty of the court is to find a solution terming the intervention by the COTU secretary general and KNHCR as being late. She said the court cannot be taken for granted forever giving the new interventions a chance.
She directed COTU-K leadership to convene a meeting including Council of Governors, KMPDU, Ministry of Finance, Labour and SRC as soon as possible to have the matter solved. She said those involved will only send representatives with Atwoli calling for the involvement of the Kenya Federation of Employers to have the matter sorted in seven days.
She suspended the ruling to February 13, 2017, warning that the suspension should not be viewed as cowardice on the side of the court. The Doctors Unions is agitating for better working conditions, job structures, criteria for promotions and the under-staffing of medical professionals in government hospitals. Doctors have also accused the government of failing to stock public hospitals with basic medicines and supplies of items such as gloves.