NAIROBI, Kenya Jul 29 – The Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) on Wednesday accused the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) of discrimination for excluding teachers on its roll from a pay rise.
KNUT said for the last one year, the TSC has been preparing two parallel payrolls, one for teachers under KNUT and another one for non-KNUT teachers.
The move is linked to KNUT’s court challenge to the current promotion model, career progression guidelines, teacher professional development guidelines and teacher appraisal system which is used by the TSC.
KNUT Secretary General Wilson Sossion said the move by TSC to discriminate KNUT members is a blackmail strategy to force teachers out of the union, and silence the union.
Sossion said KNUT wouldn’t be intimidated and will continue to fight for the rights of teachers, despite being ‘unfairly’ treated by the employer.
“The primary objective of the Teachers Service Commission is to shut down KNUT and silence its members, KNUT shall not give up even an inch of what to all teachers, non-payment of the CBA benefits even to one teacher is an injury to the entire teaching fraternity,” said Sossion.
The nominated lawmaker said TSC should pay all teachers under terms contained and signed in the 2017-2021 CBA, without exclusion of any teacher based on their affiliation a labour union.
KNUT told reporters Sh7 billion of the Sh54 billion appropriated to pay teachers ‘remains in suspense at the TSC’ awaiting KNUT-listed teachers to renounce membership in order to be paid.
“This indeed is a blackmail strategy to force teachers out of KNUT and silence the strong voice of KNUT,” said Sossion.
The Union’s National Treasurer John Matiangi termed the discrimination ill-advised, while calling upon President Uhuru Kenyatta to intervene so as to end the stalemate.
“I want to ask the leadership of this country, what do you make of it when an employer heartbreaks employees because of discrimination? This is not right?” said Matiangi.
The teachers’ union has been entangled in court battles with TSC over teacher transfers, promotions, performance appraisals and professional development programs.
The Central Organization of Trade Unions (COTU) has already called for an urgent tripartite meeting on the deteriorating industrial relations between KNUT and TSC.