Opposition leaders blame Uhuru for ongoing health sector crisis

ODM Leader Raila Odinga addressing striking doctors who had gathered at Uhuru Pack Nairobi. (Photo: Evans Ouma/Standard)

Opposition leaders have accused President Uhuru Kenyatta of failing to end the prolonged doctors' strike.

Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (CORD) co-principals Raila Odinga and Kalonzo Musyoka, who addressed doctors at the Milimani Law Courts and Uhuru Park yesterday, blamed the Government for doing little to end the strike.

"This is the time when the President should speak out. Many Kenyans have died in hospitals and at home while the President is busy championing voter registration. As we are talking here, lecturers are on strike; the teachers' strike also lasted a long time. The Government has failed Kenyans in tackling strikes," said Raila.

"Uhuru must take over the matter and solve it. Government appended its signature on the collective bargaining agreement with doctors. Signing with one hand and using the other to jail the doctors' representatives is in bad taste."

Raila said there was enough money to pay the striking doctors and that Jubilee should not give excuses.

"Billions of shillings have been looted through scandals like the National Youth Service (NYS), Ministry of Health and Eurobond. What doctors are asking for is peanuts. If this money is put to good use, doctors can be paid."

Raila accused the Jubilee government of stifling devolution so it could take over the health sector.

"We know that Jubilee is blaming governors so they can say health should revert to the national government. We know that devolution works and it will succeed," Raila said.

He urged doctors not to be intimidated and soldier on in the fight for their welfare.

Kalonzo also pointed an accusing finger at the Government, saying it should take appropriate steps to resolve all the strikes in the country.

"The way Jubilee has handled this shows they cannot lead this country to achieve Vision 2030. This is why Kenyans should vote them out come August. We are here to show solidarity with the doctors," he said.