Teacher Union Seeks Fresh Negotiations with TSC on basic salaries, Citing High Commodity Prices
The Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) is seeking to re-open negotiations on its 2021-2025 Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA).
According to Knut Deputy Secretary General Hesbon Otieno, the union has written to the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) asking for new talks.
Otieno said the move follows President Uhuru Kenyatta’s announcement last month during Labour Day celebrations that the minimum wage be increased by 12 per cent.
“The President said that, having assessed the economic growth and revitalisation of industrialisation, the economy is doing well,” said Otieno, who spoke in Mumias at the weekend.
He said Knut’s research team is doing an economic survey for presentation to TSC, adding that the 2021-2025 CBA needs revision.
“We know the challenges we have — mainly a rise in the prices of basic commodities,” he added.
In talks between TSC and all teachers’ unions last year, a need to heed the directive of the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) to freeze salary reviews for two years was emphasised.
The TSC also considered the current financial situation. “To maintain industrial relations with the union, the TSC invited the unions for a second meeting and they reached a deal. The Commission has signed a new CBA with the three unions for 2021 to 2025,” said TSC.
Knut defended its move to sign a non-monetary CBA, with its Secretary General, Collins Oyuu, saying the decision was arrived at after extensive consultations with independent experts.
Last July, Oyuu said: “Based on reports by experts, Knut held a national executive committee meeting and ratified the decision to sign the CBA without increased basic pay”