Kenyans Should Boycott Remitting NHIF Contributions If Only Civil Servants Will Benefit

By Steve Biko Wafula / November 20, 2020 | 1:13 pm



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Thomas Sowell once said that people who think that they are being “exploited” should ask themselves whether they would be missed if they left, or whether people would say: “Good riddance”?

The above statement aptly describes the current state of affairs in our country and the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. We have been left to our own devices by the government that we fund and which we voted for, twice, to say the least.

Healthcare is a mandatory right that every single citizen in this country must enjoy and have access to. This is made possible by the institution of NHIF, which is funded by all citizens, be they in the public, private, or informal sector. For the majority of us Kenyans, our only hope is NHIF. We struggle, we beg, we borrow, we sweat, we bleed to pay for it on a monthly basis, for us and for our dependents.

The National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) is the primary provider of health insurance in Kenya, with a mandate to enable all Kenyans to access quality and affordable health services. NHIF has positioned itself as a key player in the attainment of universal healthcare in the country.

Kagwe Mutahi covid
Health CS Mutahi Kagwe briefing on Covid-19 at a past function

 

The key benefits include;

  1. In-Patient Cover.

  2. Out-patient cover.

  3. Maternity cover and Reproductive Health.

  4. Ex-Gratia payments.

  5. Group life cover.

  6. Last Expense cover.

The basic understanding is that, as long as you contribute, you will be able to benefit from the above benefits for you and your dependents. Now, we were all minding our own lives, sweating, being lied to by the government when COVID-19 happened and turned our world topsy turvy.

Now, given how expensive it is to get any reasonable medical care in Kenya, we are living, surviving, and thriving on God’s grace and mercy. Many hoping that they are saved from the virus. But should they get it, then NHIF should come through, right? You are dead wrong.

The difference between governments and individuals is simple and clear. Governments don’t care, individuals do. Now, it seems that only government civil servants will be able to access NHIF to get treatment for the COVID-19 virus. So what happens to the rest of us? Mark you, the NHIF payments are mandatory and they never fail. We sweat, we bleed, we beg, we borrow to pay for them because 90 percent of us cannot afford any other insurance coverage.

Then this government that we voted for twice in a span of weeks says we must keep paying for the NHIF but we cannot access it for any treatment relating to COVID-19, not to mention that the funds that Corporate Kenya and other development partners have given us to fight the pandemic have been stolen, eaten and embezzled without any care or shame. So what are we to do, we ordinary mortals who only depend on God?

Milton Friedman once said that if you put any government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there’d be a shortage of sand. This is the case in Kenya, without shame or remorse. Ronald Reagan said that we the people should tell the government what to do, not the government telling us what to do. Unfortunately, he had not been told about Kenya.

The government’s directive is not only unfair, myopic, repugnant to what is right, reasonable and logical but also very unconstitutional. I believe the reason fueling such audacity is the fact that the government knows we will not do anything and simply roll over and get fucked without lube and we keep smiling and waiting for 2022 to vote them in again.

I challenge Kenyans to stand up, to say no to such public pronouncements that contravene our laws. I urge Kenyans to call out our elected leaders to shame them to ensure that this is not enforced. I challenge every single Kenyan that pays for the NHIF on a monthly period, to boycott the payments and seek an alternative if this order saying that only government employees will benefit from the NHIF payments in the event of COVID-19 treatment because it’s not fair nor is it right.

The freedom of speech of private individuals includes the right not to agree, not to listen, and not to finance one’s own antagonists and our constitution is very clear on our rights as far as this matter is concerned. We have an executive that is blind to the needs and emotions of the people they are meant to lead. I believe the bureaucrats in charge are deliberately trying to sabotage the President. The reason is, I believe the President cares for us and would never support such a discriminatory.

READ: NHIF Will Not Cover COVID-19 Bills For Kenyans





About Steve Biko Wafula

Steve Biko is the CEO OF Soko Directory and the founder of Hidalgo Group of Companies. Steve is currently developing his career in law, finance, entrepreneurship and digital consultancy; and has been implementing consultancy assignments for client organizations comprising of trainings besides capacity building in entrepreneurial matters.He can be reached on: +254 20 510 1124 or Email: info@sokodirectory.com

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