KENYA: UASU REJECTS GOVT PLEAS TO SUSPEND STRIKE; NURSES THREATEN TO STRIKE

The striking public universities staff unions have turned down pleas by the government to suspend their strike to enable talks on their collective bargaining agreement resume on Monday Jan 30.

Speaking after a National Executive Committee meeting UASU Secretary General Muga Kolale said the unions have resolved to continue with the strike until such a time when the 2013-2017 Collective Bargaining Agreement is negotiated, registered and its implementation timeframe agreed upon.

On Thursday, Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i outlined a raft of measures which he said were geared towards ending the ongoing public universities staff strike.

The CS had directed public universities to suspend any court case on striking lecturers to give room for discussions through the Joint Negotiations Committee.

At the same time, Matiang’i has requested the unions to seriously consider suspending their industrial action for talks to commence on Monday.

UASU says it is not ready to engage in any talks without any counter offer terming a 3 percent offer by the inter public university council as a mockery to the integrity of the dons.

Nurses issue threat

Meanwhile, nurses in the country are threatening to down their tools come Feb 1 if the government fails to honor its promise to pay Service Allowance.

The Kenya National Union of Nurses claims the allowance was part of the return to work formula agreed upon following a 10-day nationwide strike in December 2016.

The estimated Sh 7B funds was part of a negotiated agreement between the nurses and their employer to woo them back to work and suspend their strike in December 2016 as the governments fast tracks the implementation of their harmonized Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Kenya National Union of Nurse Secretary General Seth Panyako claims that it is only two counties that have channeled the funds to the union members while 45 are yet to do so.

Panyako is also calling on the county governments to also award all health workers in the public health sectors a health service allowance.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK