By Telford Aduda
The Trade Union Congress of Kenya has declared their support for teachers in the quest to ensure their employer (Teachers Service Commission) effects the 50-60 percent pay rise awarded by the court.
TUC-Ke, an umbrella body for teachers and civil servants’ unions, asked teachers to stay away from work until the Teachers Service Commission honors the court ruling. “I ask teachers to go check their bank accounts and if the money has not been deposited, they should not go to work,” said TUC-Ke Chair Charles Mukwaya while addressing the press at Knut headquarters. “Knut and Kuppet should know that TUC-Ke is behind them to ensure teachers get all their dues,” he added.
The trade unions body asked the government to lead by example and respect the rule of law, saying that plotting to go against the courts’ directive was contrary to the Constitution.
Teachers’ unions, KNUT and KUPPET, had called for a strike to coincide with schools’ opening if the increased pay was not deposited in their accounts by August 31, midnight.
Teachers in most parts of the country on Tuesday boycotted classes as the tussle between TSC and the unions over the pay increment raged on.
A spot check in all the counties revealed that only a few teachers had reported to work on Tuesday, while in some schools, pupils who arrived were turned away at the gates as no activity was taking place. Many secondary schools were set to re-open on Tuesday, leaving many parents in a dilemma on whether to send their sons and daughters to school or not.
The move to go on strike has brought confusion in the education sector as the third leg of Kenya’s school calendar kicked off to a tumultuous start as majority of teachers stayed out of public schools to protest the Government’s failure to effect the much-anticipated salary hike.