Striking lecturers’ hold demos

By Margaret Kalekye

Striking universities lecturers’ are currently holding peaceful demonstrations in Nairobi to demand implementation of a 2013-2017 collective bargaining agreement.

The dons who downed their tools a month ago are accusing the government of lacking goodwill to resolve their industrial dispute.

Universities Staff Academic Union (Uasu) and Kenya University Staff Union (Kusu) officials mantain that all their members in all the 33 public universities in the country will not go back to class until their demands are met.

The lecturers converged at the Nairobi University square before matching to Jogoo house where they will seek audience with Education CS Fred Matiang’i.

Government offer

Addressing a press conference at UASU head office in Nairobi last Friday, the officials led by the Secretary General Dr. Constantine Wasonga rubbished the Ksh10 billion awarded to them by the government.

Dr. Wesonga further clarified that it is only UASU which is mandated to call of the strike, adding that the purported signing of the Ksh10 billion offer from the Inter Public Universities Consultative Council Forum (IPUCCF) was far below the expectations of the university staff.

“Through a letter dated 10th February 2017, the government gave an offer of Ksh10 billion for the 2013-2017 CBA cycle  to cover basic salary, house allowance and pension for all public university workers. We know that a global figure such as 10billion sounds big” said Dr. Wesonga adding that “Let me clarify that this amount was not meant for lecturers alone.”

He explained that the Sh10 billion translates to Sh3.2 per cent compounded increment on basic salary and 1.6 per cent on house allowance.

The Chairman of UASU Prof. Muga K’Olale termed as propaganda, claims that the union is being used by the opposition to paralyze learning in the universities.

The over 8,000 lecturers countrywide downed their tools on 19th, January 2017.

The union wants the lowest-paid lecturer to earn Kshs. 350,000 monthly while a senior professor to be paid Kshs. 1.9 million per month.

UASU is however ready for a counter offer and salary harmonization.