Workers’ union declares 6 counties uncooperative over July pay standoff

August 14, 2019 (2 weeks ago) 7:00 am
Kenya County Government Workers Union (KCGWU) Secretary General Roba Duba (pictured) Tuesday evening told Capital FM news that county remained noncommitted even as other county pledged to settle the dues./CFM – JEMIMAH MUENI

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 14 – Kisumu, Kitui, Laikipia, Homa Bay, Samburu and Busia counties have been labelled uncooperative in the ongoing row over the non-payment of July salaries to county staff.

Kenya County Government Workers Union (KCGWU) Secretary General Roba Duba Tuesday evening told Capital FM news that county remained noncommitted even as other county pledged to settle the dues.

Some 24 counties are yet to pay July salaries according to KCGWU. All except the six had committed to paying July salaries, Duba said.

“The six county governments are rogue, they have not given any promise on when they are going to pay workers,” he said.

According to Duba, union officials were engaged in negotiations with county governments that haven’t paid July salaries to avert any further delays of workers’ salaries.

Several county workers among them those in Kisumu and Embu staged “salary parades” vowing to stay away from their workplaces until they receive their July salaries.

KCGWU which declared a seven-day strike notice last week Tuesday said there will be a “total paralysis of all services in the counties until the workers are paid.”

Duba stated that any further delay of salaries will subject workers to untold suffering as they will be unable to meet their basic needs.

Several unions representing county staff among them Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Union (KMPDU) and Kenya National Union of Nurses (KNUN) have said the dispute over the Division of Revenue Bill 2019 shouldn’t be an excuse to delay salaries because counties have a window of asking the National Treasury for money to pay salaries.

The division of revenue dispute that is causing inconvenience to Counties has however continues to persist.

This is after the Council of Governors (CoG) and Acting National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani failed to agree on the amount to be disbursed to the 47 counties to forestall a paralysis in their operations.

Yattani had earlier proposed a Sh165 billion disbursement which is 50 percent of the Sh310 billion approved by the National Assembly.

CoG represented by Laikipia Deputy Governor John Mwaniki rejected the amount saying it had no basis in law.

CoG and the Senate have demanded for a Sh335 billion allocation, a request which President Uhuru Kenyatta has dismissed as unrealistic citing insufficient resources.

CoG filed a case at the Supreme Court with Speakers of both Houses of Parliament given 14 days on July 23 to file a joint report on the status of the legislative process.

“We are reluctant to hear this case since it is legislative process. But we will hear it if we must,” said Chief Justice Maraga when the matter came up for mention.

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