The six-week-old strike by medics across Kenya is set to continue after the doctors union rejected President Kenyatta’s proposal.
The lengthy meeting, which was held at State House, Mombasa on Wednesday afternoon, was attended by heads of government ministries and agencies. Among them were Cabinet Secretaries Henry Rotich (Treasury) and Dr. Cleopa Mailu (Health).
Others include Chairperson of the Salaries Remuneration Commission Sarah Serem and the Chairperson of the Public Service Commission, Prof Margaret Kobia.
The doctors union were represented by a seven-member delegation led by the KMPDU Chairman, Dr Samuel Oroko, and Secretary General, Ouma Oluga.
According to the government, the doctors union rejected President Kenyatta’s proposal, instead demanding the full implementation of the 2013 Collective Bargaining Agreement.
State House spokesperson Manoah Esipisu revealed that the president offered to improve the doctors’ welfare by raising the entry level grade in the public service for doctors to Job Group M from Job Group L.
“This is higher than the normal entry level for other public servants and recognises doctors’ professional training,” he said.
He added that the government offered medics Enhanced Emergency Call allowances that include more than a 100 percent increment for Job Group L (KSh30,000 to KSh66,000).
Also, doctors in Job Group M to P will get KSh 72,000 from KSh 30,000 while Job Group Q will take get KSh 80,000 from the KSh 30,000.
Among the offer was a new risk allowance for every group at a flat rate of KSh 10,000 a month.
”The sum total of the government’s offer means that the minimum gross salary for doctors will increase to Ksh 196,989 from the current Ksh 140,244 at full implementation at the current entry Job Group L,” said Esipisu.
”The total impact of the government offer on the exchequer will be an additional expenditure of Ksh 4 billion annually – shared among the nation’s 5,000 doctors.”
Speaking after the closed door meeting, the doctors’ union secretary general said they were committed to resolving the crisis.
He said the delegation which attended the meeting would consult with their wider membership before responding to the Government’s offer.