Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka and Bungoma Senator Moses Wetang’ula on Saturday asked counties and health workers to engage in dialogue to find a lasting solution for the issues affecting them.
The two, who were accompanied by Kabuchai MP James Mukwe, spoke at Mukhweya village in Bungoma during the burial of a former senior police officer Cebastine Kimuna.
Wetang’ula said medical services are essential for every Kenyan.
He said if the health workers go on strike, every other Kenyan poor or rich, children or the old will be affected.
“I want to call upon both national and county governments to sit down with health workers and find a solution to this stalemate,” he said.
Lusaka urged governors to have a roundtable discussion with nurses to forestall their strike planned on Monday in 23 counties.
He said that the strike might lead to loss of lives.
“The health sector is devolved and its purely the responsibility of the county governments to handle it with care,” he said.
The nurses are accusing the county governments of failing to implement their return-to-work agreement they signed in November 2017.
Also read: Nurses’ strike: Council of Governors wants stalemate unlocked
The strike will affect Nairobi, Kisumu, Homa Bay, Murang’a, Kisii, Embu, Kiambu, Garissa and Elgeyo Marakwet, Kirinyaga, Marsabit, Nyandarua and Nyeri.
Others are Samburu, Elgeyo Marakwet, Trans Nzoia, Tharaka Nithi, West Pokot, Kitui, Wajir, Kwale, Mandera and Taita Taveta.
Twenty-one counties have shown interest in fulfilling the CBA. Only three counties Machakos, Mombasa and Migori will not be affected by the strike.
The Kenya National Union of Nurses secretary general Seth Panyako on Saturday dismissed the dialogue efforts by labour CS Ukur Yatani, saying the union has not been invited to any talks.
Yatani had on Friday formed a conciliation team led by Harun Mwaura to help arbitrate the industrial dispute between the nurses and the county governments.
He said that the dialogue efforts are aimed at ensuring that the service provision in public hospitals are not paralysed.
The Council of Governors on Saturday said it expects the nurses’ strike standoff to be resolved quickly to avoid paralysing health services across the country.
Labour CS Ukur Yattani appointed Harun Mwaura, Abisai Abenge (FKE) and Benson Okwaro of Cotu as the lead conciliators in the pay talks.
The ministry also asked the Kenya Union of Nurses to call off the strike to pave the way for the conciliation process.