, NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 12 – Health Cabinet Secretary James Macharia is appealing to County Health Executives to speed up the process of payment for their workers to boost morale, following complaints of delayed pay in most counties.
Over 1,600 health workers who included doctors, pharmacists, nurses, clinical officers and records staff had held peaceful demonstrations in Embu County to compel their employer to release their February salaries and unpaid January allowances after payments for nurses hired under the Economic Stimulus Programme (ESP) were missing in the payroll.
Macharia has assured all health workers of the central government’s commitment to expedite the transition to counties to avoid pay delays which is affecting operations at public health institutions.
“The County Governments are letting us down, money has been devolved and those nurses who are working in the counties are providing value to the counties and it is really not acceptable for county governments not to pay those people.”
“I would like to appeal to our colleagues in the counties to make sure that those many issues that reflect so badly on the entire health sector have been dealt with.” he said.
He has downplayed the effect of resignations by some of the doctors who quit recently, saying the government will do everything possible to safeguard health services in public institutions.
“If you leave the national government you go to the county governments, by law you should not be affected in terms of your position, pay or benefits; the transition should be seamless.”
“It is a very straightforward thing; it’s just the payroll administrative! The County Governments should be more concerned with the welfare of the workers,” he stressed.
The Cabinet Secretary was speaking at a consultative forum for stakeholders at a Nairobi hotel.