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Governors blame national govt for health crisis

23 December 2013, 08:31 Dareel Eric

Vihiga - Governors have accused the national government of being behind the woes that have crippled health services in public hospitals countrywide for close to two weeks now.

Council of Governors Chairperson and Bomet Governor Isaac Ruto revealed that there are cartels behind the scenes at the Ministry of Health who have sensed that devolving health services was going to disadvantage them in their usual profit making.

“We know that there are Afya House Mafias who want health services to be returned to the national government so that they can continue stealing resources that are supposed to help the common Mwananchi at the grassroots level. That one I can assure you,” Ruto said.

He added that the cartels are so used to stealing in that they feel threatened and worried that counties are finally going to develop effective structures for service delivery.  

During the thanksgiving ceremony of Vihiga Governor Moses Akaranga at Munugi Primary School, the leaders expressed their disappointment in the national government for thwarting any progress that the new constitution heralded for the poor Kenyans.

Deputy Governors Caleb Amaswache (Vihiga) and Kizito Wangalwa (Busia); Vihiga women rep Dorcas Kedogo, MPs Yusuf Chanzu (Vihiga), Charles Gimose (Hamisi) and Wilbur Ottichilo (Emuhaya), and a host of other leaders were present.  

 Ruto however said that the governors were on the lookout and were not going to sit pretty and let things go haywire.

“Why do some people fight so dearly to return health services to Nairobi when it is clearly enshrined in the constitution that it is one of the services that is supposed to be devolved? Doctors are being ignited by some individuals in national government and we will not sit and watch,” Ruto said.

Akaranga echoed the sentiments and said that already he was taking roll call of all those who are not reporting to duty and he will in due course hand them over to the national government so that it can post them elsewhere as he employs his own staff in the county.

“It is unfortunate that the highly learned doctors are the ones who are now misinterpreting the constitution. What will happen when it comes to other ministries to be fully devolved? As governors we will have to take tough decisions to save devolution,” he posed.

Trans Nzioa Governor Patrick Khaemba reiterated that they are going to fight with whatever is available so that devolution can work.

He said that it is high time that governors let striking doctors go and employ those who are dedicated to work in their respective counties.

“Doctors have really humiliated the poor Kenyans for no apparent reason. We must move on by creating for our people a means of acquiring basic healthcare as soon as possible,” he said.

The Governors’ Chairperson further noted that they will continually fight for the sovereign guarantee so that they can borrow enough money from donors to develop the counties, even as they ask the national government to increase their disbursement to counties to 45%.

“When our fathers fought for independence fifty years ago, some of their main goals were to fight poverty, illiteracy and poor health. It is sad that at this age and time, many parts of the country are still disadvantaged and cannot attain these services,” he said.



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