The Archbishop of the Anglican Church of Kenya, The Most Rev. Dr. Jackson Ole Sapit today hosted the leaders of the Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists’ Union (KMPDU) at the All Saints’ Cathedral, Nairobi for a prayer service. The meeting, which was attended by doctors drawn from various hospitals, sought to assure the medics of the Church’s support in their clamor for an improved medical system in the Country.
The Archbishop said that the voice of God should be greater than any other desire when solving issues. This, he explained, required the parties involved in the stalemate to hear the cries of the People that they served. This comes even as the Doctors’ strike entered its 82nd day with negotiations reporting minimum outcomes.
In his sermon, which was drawn from the Story of the Good Samaritan, the primate appealed to the doctors and other parties involved in the negotiations to exemplify the Love of God and show compassion to Kenyans. He reminded the government that it had no people who would vote for them if those same people were weak and suffering. “Most Kenyans are unable to afford healthcare at the Private facilities in the country. They depend on the public hospitals which, unfortunately, are not fully functional. The government should wake up to this reality,” he said.
He urged both parties to be flexible in their demands and embrace a Give and Take model in their negotiations. His grace challenged the negotiators to examine the contents of the disputed CBA and look at what could be adopted. He asked the doctors to be considerate and appreciate that any kind of implementation of the CBA could only be gradual. He added that since the issues raised by the doctors were grave, it required a comprehensive framework so as to be fulfilled.
On their part, the Doctors expressed their willingness to resume duty if the issues that were raised in the contentious CBA were ironed out. The union Secretary General, Dr. Ouma Oluga insisted that the Government was under obligation to provide quality services to its people and also take care of the needs of her employees. “Whatever caused the dispute was the lack of dialogue. We look forward to having the government give a reasonable answer to our demands, which we feel are realistic and alive to many of us here today,” he said
He also appreciated the role of the church in trying to find a solution to the dispute. He noted that the pulpit could be used to pass the right information to the congregations across the nations.
Daisy Korir, who is the KMPDU’s National treasurer, expressed KMPDU’s sympathy with Kenyans and regretted that such a solvable issue had resulted in pain for both Kenyans and doctors.
The Doctors later proceeded to the Court of appeal where they were due to give a progress report on the ongoing negotiations between them and the government. The appellate court had directed the Kenya National Human Rights Commission and the Law Society of Kenya to spearhead the process.