HomeNewsKenyan Medics dig in for overnight protest as they demand intern deployment

Kenyan Medics dig in for overnight protest as they demand intern deployment

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Kenyan medical interns’ peaceful protest demanding immediate posting escalated into an overnight vigil on July 8th. The interns, backed by the Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists & Dentists Union (KMPDU), are fuming over delays in fulfilling a 2017 agreement.

Interns in Limbo

The interns, crucial to Kenya’s healthcare system, claim they’ve been waiting over two years to secure their mandatory internship placements. This practical training is a prerequisite for obtaining a medical license, leaving their careers hanging in limbo.

Broken Promises and False Alarms

KMPDU had announced a day-long protest with the potential to extend into the night. However, confusion erupted when an unauthorized tweet from the union’s official account falsely stated the protests were suspended due to talks with the government. KMPDU swiftly clarified their account had been compromised and the protests were very much on.

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Unfinished Business

This action comes after a hard-fought victory in May 2024. A “Return to Work Formula” agreement ended a crippling 56-day doctor’s strike, highlighting the dire state of Kenya’s healthcare system. One key provision of the agreement mandated intern deployment by July 7th, 2024, a deadline the government has missed.

Gathering Storm at Afya House

The interns, now gathered at Afya House, Kenya’s Ministry of Health headquarters, expressed their outrage. They claim the delay jeopardizes their future careers and have threatened to occupy the ministry building until their demands are met. Their grievances extend beyond deployment, calling for the removal of Health CS Susan Nakhumicha from her position.

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