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We are not to blame for nurses' strike, SRC tells House team

Salaries and Remunerations Commission chair Sarah Serem (right) and vice-chair Daniel Ogutu on May 21, 2015 during a media briefing. FILE PHOTO | NMG
Salaries and Remunerations Commission chair Sarah Serem (right) and vice-chair Daniel Ogutu on May 21, 2015 during a media briefing. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The Salaries and Remuneration Commission has said that it is not responsible for the current nurses’ strike.

SRC said what the nurses are agitating is beyond the pay recommendations and job evaluation the commission undertook.

The commission's vice-chairman, Mr Daniel Ogutu, who led the commission before a special committee of the National Assembly said the nurses are keen on pushing for their own commission.

“The complications we have in the medical sector are beyond money, people are keen on pushing for their own commissions to push for their interests just like the Teachers Service Commission among others, does,” Mr Ogutu said.

The nurses, now in their fourth month of strike and with no solution in sight, have blamed the Sarah Serem-led commission of giving them a lower grading system compared to the other cadres of employees.

Additional Sh47 million

On Wednesday, the SRC sought an additional Sh47 million to complete the job evaluation for government employees.

The SRC vice-chairman defended the request, maintaining that the commission has brought about industrial peace since the process started.

The amount is needed to pay two consultants -- PricewaterhouseCoopers, which is undertaking job evaluation for treasury institutions, public universities, tertiary and research institutions employees, and Ernst and Young, which is evaluating disciplined services including the police and military officers.

SRC did not break down the amount each consultant is to be paid.

“The commission started harmonisation of salaries about three years ago. We are now at the tail end of the process. We are looking to an even better situation by the time our job is done,” Mr Ogutu said.

The commission, whose mandate is expected to lapse at the end of the year, is also seeking Sh5 million for gratuity of its two employees who are retiring this year.

The parliamentary committee is expected to make its decision on the requests on Thursday.

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