Public university lecturers finally call off strike

July 18, 2017 2:58 pm
The announcement was made by UASU officials Tuesday afternoon after an agreement was reached with the government on their negotiated Collective Bargaining Agreement/FILE

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 18 – The Universities Academic Staff Union has called off the public universities lecturers strike with classes expected to resume on Wednesday.

The strike which was in its second week was called off by the union’s Secretary-General Constantine Wasonga on Tuesday afternoon who said an agreement was reached with the government on their negotiated Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA).

“The strike is over; today the Universities Academic Staff Union (UASU) and the National Executive Council (NEC) met and unanimously mandated me to call off the strike; We have called off this strike because we have received a legally binding letter from the government promising to honor the agreed negotiated CBA,” said Wasonga.

Kenya University Staff Union (KUSU) Secretary-General, Charles Mukhwaya however warned that they would resort to industrial action if the government violates the agreement.

“We want to give the government yet another benefit of doubt that the Sh5.2 billion is paid by July 31. If by then our members would have not received any money we will resort to industrial action,” cautioned Mukhwaya.

Demands over the implementation of the Sh10 billion CBA paid off last week when the Ministry of Education promised to disburse the Sh5.2 billion balance.

University Education Principal Secretary, Collette Suda in a letter dated July 13 and addressed to Paul Kanyari, Chairperson, Inter-Public Universities Council Consultative Forum said: “The National Treasury has granted authority to the ministry to incur the expenditure of Sh5.2 billion.”

The government had already released Sh4.775 billion to the university lecturers and other workers but they rejected it demanding the implementation of the full amount.

During a closed door meeting Thursday last week between ministry and union officials, the lecturers and workers’ officials had been advised to request their members to wait for another one week but the government gave them an assurance that it was committed to resolving the stalemate.

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