The Kenyan government on Wednesday dismissed 86 doctors who had refused to resume work amid an ongoing strike since December 2020, against poor working conditions during the coronavirus pandemic.
Chibanzi Mawachonda, secretary-general of the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Pharmacists and Dentist’s Union (KMPDU), a doctors association, was among those dismissed.
Speaking by telephone to Anadolu news agency, Chibanzi Mawachonda of the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Pharmacists and Dentist’s Union said the government’s position was illegal and un-called for.
He condemned the move and called on the government to resolve its grievances as opposed to firing them.
Talks with the government late December over salary and lack of protective gear, led many doctors returning to work.
But, some refused saying that their issues remained unresolved. The sacked doctors have vowed to take the government to court.
At least 14 doctors have died of the coronavirus in Kenya since the first case was confirmed in March, according to the doctors union.
Kenya’s health care system is facing further pressure from nurses who have similar grievances and have also been striking since early December.
The Kenyan Health Ministry has so far registered 1,694 fatalities and 97,398 infections from the coronavirus.