A labor court in Kenya jailed seven doctors’ union officials for failing to comply with an order demanding that they end their strike.
Judge Hellen Wasilwa made the ruling on Monday, sentencing the doctors to one month in jail. The presiding judge had earlier suspended a one-month sentence handed down to them on December 20 on the condition that the doctors would end their strike.
However, the doctors refused, and the judge subsequently lifted her suspension of the sentence.
The affected doctors are Samuel Oroko, Ouma Oluga, Daisy Korir, Evelyne Chege, Allan Ochanji, Mwachonda Chibandzi, and Titus Ondoro, all leaders of the Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists Union (KMPDU).
Over 5,000 aggrieved doctors have been on strike since December 5, demanding better pay and higher quality medical facilities. The strike has paralyzed hospitals and medical centers across Kenya for several weeks.
In a show of solidarity, doctors belonging to the Kenya Medical Association announced after the ruling that they would join the strike.