Sossion Allegedly Patrons Formation Of A new Teachers’ Union
Just a few hours after the release of the National education union’s (NEU) constitution, a section of the fronters have revealed their secret association with former KNUT secretary general Wilson Sossion. One fronter, who sought anonymity, hinted that Sossion is the sponsor and ultimate owner of the new union.
Sossion has However publicly distanced himself from NEU, maintaining that he is nolonger interested in union and teacher’s politics since he quit Knut.
“Teachers are rebelling. Splinters are formed to fill vacuums. I left Knut and shouldn’t be associated with activities within the teaching service,” he said.
The National Education Union comes after several fruitless struggles, which have incited very many once loyal members to quit the former giant teachers’ union, KNUT. It also follows a pre-influenced leadership transformation in KNUT and the signing of a controversial cashless collective bargaining agreement, CBA with the Teachers Service Commission TSC.
The splinter group, NEU, guided by the motto of “Service, Justice and Unity”, plans to recruit
teachers from pre-primary, primary, secondary and tertiary levels, as well as those in private
KNUT for instance draws most of its members from primary school teachers, whereas KUPPET draws most of its members from secondary schools, with some from teacher training colleges. The Kenya Union of Special Needs Education Teachers (Kusnet) targets teachers working in special schools and teachers with special conditions from any learning level. KUPPET, KNUT and KUSNET have all signed recognition agreements with TSC.
The formation of NEU is another scheme to scramble for millions of shillings remitted by teachers monthly. The registration process for NEU has reached its advanced stages. It is not yet clear if TSC will sign a recognition agreement with the new unions, but they will seek international support from other teachers’ unions across the world.
NEU has pledged to treat salary increment for all teachers and reduction of union dues from 1.8 per cent to one per cent of a teachers’ salary as the main issues. It has also promised that all officials from the branches to the national level will be elected by all members and not through a delegates’ system.
The union also is determined to bridge the huge salary disparities between classroom teachers and the school administrators.