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KEMSA Board in Fear of Losing Their Jobs as KDF, NYS Take Over The Corporation

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KEMSA Board in Fear of Losing Their Jobs as KDF, NYS Take Over The Corporation

KEMSA Headquarters

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Anxiety has rocked the Kenya Medical Supply Authority (KEMSA) workforce as the Kenya Defense Forces (KDF) and the National Youth Service take over the management of the firm.

KEMSA board has already issued a general notice letter to all non-core staff to work from home for a 30-day period.

This is meant to pave way for the review of KEMSA’s structure, coming at a time when the firm is facing criticism over misappropriation of public funds.

KEMSA board, Thursday, said it is facing financial, supply chain, warehousing and distribution crisis.

The release of all non-core staff to work from home is a procedural formality to facilitate the review of the organizational structure, the board said.

The exercise will be undertaken expeditiously to ensure that the staff complement is fit for purpose and within the approved staff establishment levels.

“This commitment includes aligning the organisational structure to industry-accepted standards for a health commodities and technologies procurement organisation,”

said Mary Chao Mwadime, KEMSA’s Chairperson.

This comes three months after the Global Fund (GF) Grant tasked Kenya to speedily resolve challenges facing KEMSA which include governance, transparency and accountability.

Mark Edington, the GF Head, said that while they are alive to the fact that KEMSA reform programs are ongoing and are expected to positively transform the authority, the transformation of the body to its former glory is very critical for Kenya’s health sector.

He asked Kenya to pay urgent attention to resolving the issues at KEMSA, including addressing the recent disruption in supply chain for critical drugs for HIV.

“We also request that the Government of Kenya puts in place mitigation measures to ensure timely procurements of health products, including for Covid-19, which are critical and urgent. Some of the arrangements we have seen are unacceptably long,”

said Edington.

KEMSA woes started at the height of COVID-19 pandemic when it got embroiled in a Ksh.7.6 billion scandal involving the procurement of COVID-19 related medical supply equipment.

In April this year, President Uhuru Kenyatta intervened by disbanding KEMSA board.

He then appointed Mwadime to oversee KEMSA operations for a three-year period term, effective April 30, 2021.

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