The fate of striking workers is now in the hands of the governors, Labour CS Ukur Yattani has said.
Speaking at a press conference on Friday, Yattani said the court has pronounced itself on the matter and disciplinaryaction on the nurses will be dealt with by their employers.
“The position of the government is very clear the law has to be obeyed. The President was reiterating the order that was given by the court,” he said.
However, moments later, Cotu Secretary General Francis Atwoli said the Council of Governors should not have dragged the President into the nurses’ strike
Atwoli also said Yattani was “not fit” to head the Labour docket.
“If I was the Head of State the CS Labour would have packed his things and gone home, he is not competent to stand up and tell us about labour relations issues if he can’t resolve such a small issue,” he said.
On Wednesday, President Uhuru Kenyatta ordered all nurses to report to work by February 15 or face dismissal by the county government and the Health ministry.
Uhuru instructed the National Police Service to take stern action against picketers who might harass public servants going to work.
On Thursday, the Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet announced that striking nurses who will act in breach of the Public Order Act will be dealt with firmly.
Last week, the court suspended the nurses’ strike for 60 days. This was after the Council of Governors sought an injunction to enable both parties to negotiate.
However, on Wednesday, the Kenya National Union of Nurses’ secretary general Seth Panyako maintained their strike is still on despite Uhuru’s threat to sack and arrest those participating.
“I have no mandate to respond to the President. If I do I will be overstepping my mandate. I urge our members to remain firm and fight for their rights. If there will be something otherwise we will advise them accordingly,” Panyako said.
He said more counties will be joining the strike on Monday.
CoG chairman Wycliffe Oparanya on Tuesday moved to court to challenge the legitimacy of the strike by the Kenya National Union of Nurses.
Nurses in 23 counties went on strike on January 4 demanding the implementation of the 2017 return-to-work formula.