188 nurses who were sacked in Kirinyaga county over strike and alleged gross misconduct will not be reinstated, governor Anne Waiguru has said.
In their positions, Waiguru said that the county has already hired new nurses, and there is no chance for them to get back their jobs.
“At the moment, we have no vacant positions in the health sector and, therefore, we can’t absorb the sacked employees,” she said.
This is despite directives by the Public Service Commission (PSC) ordering the county to reinstate the nurses, with the governor relying on a court ruling to block the nurses from getting back their jobs.
“The Public Service Commission can’t overrule the decision of the court. We have not budgeted for more workers. At the moment we are busy fighting the third wave of Covid-19 which is spreading fast,” she said.
Ms Waiguru who spoke at her official residence in Kagio where she was disbursing Ksh3 million bursaries to needy secondary schools however encouraged the nurses to apply for jobs when “vacancies arise”.
“We are planning to expand some of the health facilities in the area and we may require extra health workers. If we advertise for positions, the sacked nurses can apply for consideration,” said Waiguru.
In its directive, PSC had termed the move to sack the nurses as irregular, unfair and unlawful.
The nurses had petitioned to have back their jobs and be paid their salaries in full as ordered by the commission after they were “cleared of any wrongdoing”.
“We have to report back to work without fail and the county government should cooperate. We have to report back to work without fail and the county government should cooperate,” said the local Kenya National Union of Nurses Secretary Wangui Karigi.
The nurses have been out of work since 2019 when they were sacked by the county.