What you need to know:
- In its ruling on March 3, the commission held that the CPSB erred in dismissing the health workers as the grievances they raised were legitimate.
The Kirinyaga County Public Service Board (CPSB) has asked the Public Service Commission (PSC) to review its ruling for the reinstatement of 188 nurses sacked in 2019.
In an appeal, the county employer wants the ruling set aside, saying it was wrongfully blamed and cited for failing to improve the nurses’ working conditions.
According to the CPSB, it was not its mandate to determine the employees’ working environment.
“The responsibility is of the county executive, an independent entity which was not included in this suit,” the county employer said in its application.
It argued that the issue would have been addressed had the Kenya National union of Nurses included the executive as one of the parties in the case.
Through lawyer Leonard Rono, the board said it had already recruited 231 nurses to replace those it dismissed in 2019.
It added it was impossible to restore the workers to their former positions as there was no budgetary allocation.
“The county secretary expressed the same fears when this ruling was made as there is no money to cover the extra employees,” said Mr Rono.
The CPSB said it carried out a joint inspection with the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentist Board at the county’s health facilities on May 29,2019.
The board later approved the state of the county hospitals and lifted a suspension restricting the admission of patients at the facilities following the nurses’ grievances.
“While making its decision, the commission should not have considered any issues raised past May 30, 2019 as we had already given the facilities a clean bill of health to operate,” said Mr Rono.
In its ruling on March 3, the commission held that the CPSB erred in dismissing the health workers as the grievances they raised were legitimate.
It said the nurses gave the county a 28-day strike notice and only took industrial action after their grievances were not addressed.
They were later sent home after participating in a protest against poor working conditions.
They complained that Kerugoya Hospital was filthy and lacked adequate facilities, making their work difficult.