NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 9 – All Governors have finally agreed to sign up to the Sh38 billion medical equipment deal from the National Government to counties.
Council of Governors chairman Peter Munya on Tuesday said this was agreed after wide-ranging consultations amongst the county chiefs, but insists that thorny issues must be resolved by the National Government.
“We don’t want to be blamed or be used as a scapegoat for the health problems that have bedevilled the health sector in this country,” he stated.
Pressure has been mounting pressure from the National Government and the public for the Governors to sign the medical scheme.
The move, Munya stated that was informed by the need to do away with the perception that Governors were against the National Government initiative to improve the ailing health sector in the country.
“Counties are in different stages… they are unique in the health needs. We need a structured discussion tailor made to fit the different counties because we are in different levels of preparedness,” he explained.
“We also don’t want to be seen as if we are a barrier to the Kenyan public accessing good healthcare and that’s why we have decided to give this olive branch though there are many issues that are yet to be discussed and clarified.”
All Governors will now sign the Memorandum of Understanding that will allow the adoption of leased medical equipment that will be installed in all the 47 counties.
The programme has only been rolled out by the Machakos County Government where it was launched by President Uhuru Kenyatta two weeks ago.
Munya said more talks with the National Government are set to kick off on Saturday in a bid to iron out all the underlying issues that remain contentious.
Among the demands they have include the employment of more health personnel by the National Government and expansion of various health sectors.
The Governors want to know how the payments will be done for the leasing of the equipment.
More than 25 Governors have signed the Memorandum of Understanding despite serious opposition from some of the colleagues who insisted that the proper procedure had to be followed.
Owing to the shortage of doctors around the country, the suppliers of the equipment will be tasked with training and creating expertise in the running of the machines, they will also pay the staff as the health ministry is buying the service and not the machines.