NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 3 – The Teachers Service Commission (TSC) is now threatening to interdict tutors who are participating in the nationwide strike which it has termed illegal.
A statement from the commission indicated that the strike which entered its fourth day Thursday was not properly called because the Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) and the Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET) have not served TSC with a notice as required in law.
It directed teachers to report to schools immediately, failure to which action will be taken against individuals.
“No strike notice has been issued as per the law. Whatever reason given for the strike is still subject to an appeal in the Court of Appeal. Any strike action emanating from the current circumstances is illegal and unprotected,” a statement signed by the TSC’s Head of Communications Kihumba Kamotho warned.
“Individual teachers who boycott work or engage in unprofessional conduct will certainly suffer consequences in accordance to the Teachers Service Commission Act and the Code of Regulations for Teachers.”
The commission further accused KNUT of encouraging teachers to boycott work in complete disregard of set procedures.
“All TSC County Directors and Ministry of Education, County Directors of Education have been directed to closely monitor the situation and take appropriate measures to address any contravention of the law and Service Regulations,” it stated.
It pointed out that teachers who attempt to disrupt learning will also be dealt with firmly and conclusively.
“The government has repeatedly explained that the Sh20.1 billion needed to fund the salary demand was not budgeted for in the 2015/2016 financial year and cannot be raised in any other viable and sustainable method. We appeal for patience as the government strives to address the matter,” it stated.
The fresh threats were issued hours after KNUT Secretary General Wilson Sossion urged teachers to continue with their industrial action until the government pays their salary increment.
According to Sossion, officials representing all regions in the country agreed that no teacher will report to school until the government honours the court order awarding them a 50 to 60 percent pay increase.
Sossion said teachers will not accept to be taken for granted and that is why no form of explanation without money would work.
The Supreme Court had declined to give a stay order yet again to the TSC to stop the payment of the salary increment pending the hearing of an application contesting it.
Supreme Court Judge Jackton Ojwang’ directed the commission to serve all parties in the case with the application and return to court next Tuesday when the hearing date of the application will be set.