Nairobi Hospital blasted over new Board

Nairobi Hospital blasted over new Board

An all male Board announced by the Nairobi Hospital on Friday saw Kenyans express outrage and disappointment over lack of gender balance.

The new Board was voted in on Wednesday with Dr Irungu Ndirangu as the new chairperson.

The deputy chairperson is Dr Charles Bichage and members include Dr Stephen Ochiel, Victor Misenda, Charles Wambugu, Eng. Maxwell Odongo, Robert Shaw and Amb. Charles Amira.

On Friday, Uasin Gishu Woman Rep Gladys Boss Shollei hit out at Nairobi Hospital over the all-male Board.

“On behalf of the Women of Kenya, I wish to protest against the composition of the board of the Nairobi Hospital. I call upon all women to boycott Nairobi hospitals countrywide. Are you saying there is not a single qualified woman to sit on your board!?” she posed.

Prominent lawyer Donald Kipkorir added: “The Nairobi Hospital, the most profitable hospital in Kenya can’t have even one woman on its Board is unmitigated disaster and scandal … The Minister for Health should invoke Executive Order & dissolve the Board. That EIGHT MEN were elected without a woman is mind-boggling.”

— Esther Koimett, CBS (@EstherKoimett) November 30, 2019

Nominated MP Jennifer Shamalla also chimed in saying: “In as much as Nairobi hospital is a private company, corporate governance principals demand that the Board be inclusive. Clearly these appointments reek of “CAPTURE” by certain members. No women on your Board is DEPLORABLE to say the least!”

Dr Elizabeth Wala, founder and chair of Multiples to Multiples Society said on Twitter: ”In 2019, Nairobi Hospital did not find any woman fit to sit on their board! Like how now? A big shame to this private facility plagued with governance issues! Let us share until this is rectified.”

Scheaffer Okore, a Current Trade and Investment officer at PanAfrican Chamber of Commerce said in jest: ”But does Kenya even have women who doctor and can be on boards? Does it?

Nairobi Hospital has been embroiled in a court case for the past few months over the Board leadership.

A report in the Business Daily said the directors had been accused of poor oversight of infrastructure projects at the hospital with costs alleged to have been inflated.

“They also claimed that the hiring of top executives was irregular and that the board had failed to file tax returns for eight years, exposing the hospital to KRA penalties,” the Business Daily report adds.

This comes on the backdrop of a survey that put Kenya’s gender equality score at an average of 26%.

The study from Equileap in partnership with the Nairobi Stock Exchange ranked 61 publicly listed companies in order of higher returns linked to gender equality.

Standard Chartered Bank emerged top followed by WPP Scangroup, Safaricom, Barclays Bank of Kenya, Kenya Airways, Kenya Reinsurance, KenGen, Stanbic Bank, Kenya Commercial Bank Group and East African Breweries Limited.

The Nairobi Hospital is however a private institution owned by the Kenya Hospital Association and was not part of the survey.