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KUPPET Threatens to go to Court over January Housing Levy Deductions

The Kenya Union of Post-Primary Education Teachers union has said it will take legal action against the Teachers Service Commission for deducting the Housing levy in January payslips.

Kuppet Secretary General Akelo Misori on Wednesday said the union will take all measures to protect teachers’ earnings and benefits.

“This includes instituting contempt proceedings against TSC in their capacity over this matter of the Housing Levy tax,” he said.

Missori said they had seen the payslips of several teachers indicating the levy was deducted.

“Many members from around the country have shared their payslips with us and they all indicate the Commission deducted the Housing levy tax from the January 2024 salaries,” Misori said.

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“This is despite there being clear orders by the High Court and Court of Appeal declaring the Housing Levy illegal and unconstitutional.”

Misori demanded for a refund of the housing levy deducted from teachers’ January pay.

Kuppet said TSC cannot give an excuse by saying the deductions happened because they had already prepared the payroll.

“We have seen in this country teachers being paid even on the 17th of the following month where there were small issues with the payroll. Now a big issue where the Court of Appeal has given an order calls for a recall for any payroll which has gone to the bank,” Misori said.

Misori said the court ruling came at a good time to allow TSC to make appropriate changes to the payroll.

He said the move by TSC to deduct teachers from the illegal levy shows the Commission was willing to disobey the law.

He said Kuppet wants the immediate release of the Housing deductions.

“We have also sought an assurance from the Commission that it will obey court orders going forward. Including and specifically the orders on the Housing Levy,” he said.

Misori urged the government to take all necessary measures to protect teachers’ earnings and benefits.

“Amid the economic difficulties that teachers and all Kenyans are facing, the last thing we expect from a responsible employer is the making of illegal deductions from their pay,” Misori said.

“If we knew they were going to blatantly disobey court orders then we could have yelled on the streets. The yelling which they understand best.

“But we thought they would be responsible Commission and a responsible employer.”

Misori said the union was never in support of the Finance Bill 2023 which caused uproar among Kenyans.

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