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Officials of the KNUT and KUPPET unions address a press conference on June 29, 2021 when they rejected a CBA proposal by the Teachers Service Commission (TSC).

Kenya

TSC and teacher unions in new stand-off over ’empty’ CBA

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 29- Teachers’ unions on Tuesday rejected the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) counter offer for the 2021-2025 Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), saying it has no monetary benefits for teachers.

The Unions including Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT), Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET) made the declaration after a 4-hour meeting that had been convened by TSC, at Nairobi’s Safari Park Hotel.

With the 2017-2021 CBA lapsing on June 30, 2021, the unions were pushing for the implementation of the new CBA, even as the country transitions to the Competency Based Curriculum (CBC).

“TSC came with a very surprising offer on the table, the proposal was very strong on maternity and paternity leave but will this bring food to the table?” wondered new KNUT Secretary General Collins Oyuu who replaced Wilson Sossion last week.

Oyuu said the proposal had nothing for teachers in terms of remenuration apart from extending maternity leave to 120 days and paternity leave to 21 days.

Having been elected to office just three days ago, Oyuu said he will not accept to be “crucified” by teachers who have high expectations of him.

On his part, KUPPET Secretary General Akelo Misori said the union had made a difficult decision to reject the TSC proposal.

Misori said time was ripe for the commission to review teachers’ salaries, saying they have also been subjected to the negative effects of the economy.

“KUPPET is reluctant to entertain a CBA with no monetary benefits,” stated Misori.

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“TSC must arrange its house in order and within the next 7 days bring a counter offer which is acceptable,” added Misori.

In a quick rejoinder, TSC urged teachers to accept the offer, citing the economic situation brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.

TSC CEO Nancy Macharia said they put on the table what was available.

She also implored the unions to consider that teachers last year received full salaries even while at home, as opposed to other sectors which downsized or subjected their employees to salary cuts.

“We can’t give what we don’t have,” she said.

KNUT’s proposal was 200 per cent while KUPPET had proposed 30-70 percent salary increment.

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