Doctors’ Pay Comes from Public Funds, Not Personal Pockets – sifuna tells Ruto

Nairobi Senator Edwin Sifuna has responded to President William Ruto’s remarks regarding the ongoing dispute between the government and striking doctors.

President Ruto had challenged leaders supporting the strike to foot the bill themselves, citing a lack of government funds to meet the doctors’ salary demands.

Senator Sifuna, speaking during a Senate plenary shortly after Ruto’s comments, criticized the president’s stance.He emphasized that the doctors’ salaries come from public funds, not from the president’s personal finances, and therefore, their payment demands should be honored.

“If you support the strike then pay the money they are asking for. We must stop chasing what is popular, and instead go for what is right,” Ruto said.

“I want to remind him that the money that pays doctors, the money that pays him, is not his money. We support doctors, and we want our taxes to pay doctors,” he said.

Nairobi Senator Edwin Sifuna also responded to Inspector General of Police Japhet Koome’s warnings to the striking doctors, expressing deep concern over what he perceived as Koome’s incompetence.

Sifuna argued that Koome’s threats not only disregarded the doctors’ rights to assemble peacefully, as guaranteed by the Bill of Rights, but also reflected poorly on his suitability for the position of national security.

“He does not seem to understand the Bill of Rights and people have the right to assemble. I have been seeing doctors in the streets dressed in their white coats [and] they don’t look threatening at all,” noted Sifuna.

“When an IG of police says that they are going to bludgeon doctors who are on strike this is someone who has no idea on what he is doing in the office of the IG of police.”

Regarding the government’s stance on the wage bill, Sifuna challenged the notion that doctors should only receive what the government deems available, asserting that existing CBAs should be honored regardless of financial constraints.

He criticized the government’s portrayal of civil protests as being orchestrated by cartels, highlighting the need for genuine dialogue to address the ongoing crisis.

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