A 54- year old man died Wednesday as he helplessly waited for emergency medical attention on the waiting benches outside the Kilifi County hospital.
County hospital nurses who have joined the doctors’ strike that has been running for the past 81 days were on a protest procession to the governor’s office to air their grievances when David Kiti who had suffered severe injuries after falling off from a coconut tree succumbed to injuries.
The deceased is reported to have been tapping palm wine (mnazi) when the accident occurred at Rare Village in Vitengeni division, Ganze Sub County on Tuesday night.
His brother Joseph Kiti who spoke to The Informer outside the hospital mortuary where he took the body for preservation said effort to get first aid in health facilities in Ganze did not bear fruit as hospital personnel had vacated them to travel to Kilifi.
He said the deceased sustained broken legs and severe body injuries and died on the benches before he could get assistance.
“I blame the death of my brother on the striking doctors and nurses. I appeal to the county and national governments to intervene and end the strike as many other patients are suffering at different places,” he said.
Ganze Sub County acting commissioner Moses Mwambudzo who confirmed the accident urged tappers to be cautious when climbing the coconut trees as the drought has weakened them.
Kilifi county chief officer in charge of health Dr. Timothy Malingi confirmed Thursday that the nurses spent the whole of Wednesday outside the hospital as they protested but reported back to their places of work Thursday.
He said the County began paying the nurses their service allowances in arrears yesterday after it had been delayed for one month.
Malingi said the delay to pay the nurses had been brought about by the salaries and remuneration commission (SRC) which did not give the direction on how to release the money.
“The commission failed to give the code to be used for payments. Allowances are included in salaries and SRC is the only body mandated to give directions of how payments are to be done,” he said.
He said the nurses were to get their allowances from January according to the agreement with their union leaders but payments could not be commenced immediately in the absence of direction from the mandated body.