Knut response following members missing CBA and July promotions

Knut response following members missing CBA and July promotions

CONTEMPT  OF THE COLLECTIVE  BARGAINING AGREEMENT  (CBA) BETWEEN  TSC AND KNUT BY THE TEACHERS SERVICE COMMISSION

Our attention has been drawn to the continued running of two (2)  payroll by the Teachers Service Commission at the close of July 2020 payroll and exclusion of members of the Kenya National  Union of Teachers from benefiting in the 3″ and 4″ phases of the Collective Bargaining  Agreement (CBA), despite the CBA being signed, deposited in Court and certificate issued and Parliament appropriating 54 billion shillings to finance the pay to all teachers.

We wish to  state that teachers  are governed through the constitution, the TSC Act, the Labour Relations Act and the CBA in line with the International Labour Organization  (ILO)  standards  and  all  other  international  instruments  which prohibit labour discrimination.

Implementing  pay  structures  of the  CBA applies  to all  employees  of the  TSC duly registered, employed and assigned duties in all schools by the TSC.

While negotiating  the  CBA, we negotiated  for benefits  under  Section  13  (5) of the  TSC  Act  for  all  registered  teachers  and  not  members  of  KNUT.    Any negotiated terms apply to all registered teachers under employment of the TSC. We can never negotiate exclusive terms for our members.

The CBA Clause 4  recognises both the Code of Regulations (COR) for Teachers and the  Code of Conduct and  Ethics  for Teachers  as  instruments  of governing teachers  and  I   quote  “The  code  of Regulations and  Code of Conduct for Teachers shall form an integral pert of this Agreement” end of quote.

The input of the Code of Regulations is that Privileges and Rights of teachers are clearly outlined  and it  is  LAW.   Teachers  Terms  and Conditions of Service  shall only LEGALLY be regulated through the Code of Regulations.

Any new parameters of Managing/Controlling teachers must be contained in the Code of Regulations  for teachers  and consequently  taken  through  Parliament and adopted in the Code of Regulations.   As long as it is  not in the Code of Regulations then  it  is  not  law  and it  cannot  affect teachers  terms  whatsoever. CPG has never been discussed nor agreed between  us and TSC and neither is  it contained in the code of regulations nor has it been approved  by parliament.

The Teachers Service Commission therefore cannot ignore the Code of Regulations  and  develop  other  parameters  and  issue  circulars  to  manage teachers and that is why  the purported  Career Progression Guidelines (CPG) which are not  contained  in the  Code of Regulations  have been declared Null and Void by the  Employment  and Labour Relations  Court and the  Circular of 2″ May, 2018  bringing it into force without negotiating ith Unions and without taking the guidelines through Parliament was nullified.

Any continued application  of the same by TSC is not only Contempt of the Court Directives but a violation of Clause 4 of the CBA by TSC and a declaration that it has decided to manage teachers outside the Code of Regulations.

Part 12 of the CBA and I   quote “Parties  agree  that  Career Progression in the  teaching serice  shall be implemented as provided  under Part I of the  Code of  Regulations  for Teachers”  end of quote. Part  VI  of the Code of Regulations therefore fully recognises the Schemes of Services as tools to manage promotional progression of teachers.  Nowhere does it mention CPG.

In the ruling of  Byram Ong’aya, TSC was ordered to align the Schemes  of Services to the pay structures of the CBA.  The TSC has gone against Clause 12 of the CBA to  purport to undertake   promotion   of  teachers   using  Career Progression Guidelines which have been nullified by the Court  and therefore technically illegal and not contained in the Code of Regulations for Teachers.

Clause 19 of the CBA is very clear on non-discrimination and I  quote Parties to this Agreement shall be boundb the preision under  regulation 16 of the  Code  f Regulation  for  teachers   on  Non  Discrimination  end of quote. TSC has gone against this clause by running two payrolls for the last 12 months.

Part  16  of the  Code of  Regulations  for  Teachers  states  and  I    quote:-  The Commission  shall  not  discriminate on any  ground against any  person in respect  to employment end of quote.

We wish to state as follows:

1.  TSC  should not engage in unnecessary confusion of the CBA pay structure implementation by seeking to abolish the recognition and rewarding  of new academic qualifications by sneaking in the Career Progression Guidelines which  have  been nullified  by the  Employment  and  Labour Relations Court and further  not contained in the Code of Regulation for Teachers.

Attempting to abolish the Schemes of Services is merely an attempt to abolish recognition of new academic qualifications which teachers have undertaken  and spent a lot of their resources on.  ‘THIS IS THE AGENDA OF  TSC, NEVER TO  RECOGNIZE ACADEMIC PAPERS  OF TEACHERS  WHICH ARE FULLY RECOGNIZED BY THE  SCHEMES OF SERVICES.

2.  That  the CBA signed  between  KNUT and  TSC  on 25″ July, 2016 clearly outlines  the  pay  structure  of all the  teachers  under employment  of the TSC  and  must  all  be  paid  without  any  discrimination  whatsoever  as provided  for  in the  Labour  Relations Act  5(1), the CBA Section 19, the Code of  Regulations  for  Teachers  Section  16  and  the  ILO  Convention Section 95.

We remind  TSC  of the Principal of “Equal  Pey fer  Equal Value  of Work_  Done and  that teachers are not  Union employees but merely members of the Union exercising their constitutional  rights and should not be victimised through discrimination.   They are employees of TSC entitled to be unionised.

3.   The employer  should  not  misinterprete  the  provisions  of  the  Labour Relations Act,  Section 2 to mean that the  Byram Ong’aya ruling referred to the exclusion of KNUT members from benefitting from the CBA.

The definition  of the Act  defines Lnionisable  Employees”  to mean employees eligible for membership of a trade union.

In this case eligible members of KNUT are all teachers under employment in the teaching service.   Deliberate misinterpretation of the Court Judgement No. 151 to punish KNUT and its membership is wrong.

4.   Nowhere  did  the  Employment and  Labour  Relations Court  under the ruling No.151 direct TSC not to implement the 3″ and 4″ phase of the CBA for KNUT members.

The  interpretation  of  TSC  and  subsequently  implementation  of  two payrolls is  mischievous, naughty and mere contempt of the Employment and Labour Relations Court to defeat the good judgement.

5.   For the  last thirteen  (13)  months, the execution  of  2  payrolls and  the instructions to KNUT members to renounce membership of KNUT through an illegal  digital  platform that  has  been suspended  by the  Employment and Labour Relations Court constitutes brazen and blatant attack  on the labour rights of teachers who have chosen to be members of KNUT.

This indeed  is  a blackmail  strategy to force teachers out of KNUT and silence the strong voice of KNUT.

6.  We demand  that all the money appropriated to pay  teachers  be paid  to all  teachers  under the  employment of TSC as contained and   signed  in  the CBA_without  exclusion of  any teacher in regard  to  their  affiliation to  any specific  Union.    We are aware that seen  (7) billion  of the 54  billion  remains in suspense at the TSC awaiting members of KNUT to renounce membership in order to be paid. This is a primitive strategy of attacking unions.

7.   TSC should  respect the  labour rights  of KNUT and cease  interfering  with the membership register at the payroll  and  ensure strict remittance of Union dues to the Union as provided for under Section 49  of the Labour Relations Act by all members.

8.   TSC  should ensure the Agency Fee in favour  of KNUT is  gazetted and implemented to protect the Trade Union Rights of KNUT.   It was fundamentally wrong for TSC to ASSIST the gazettement and implementation  of  Agency  Fee for  KUDPET from  May  2018  and  has continued  to  frustrate  the  gazettement  of  Agency  Fee for  KNUT and

further  shifting  the  blame   to  the  Ministry  of  Labour.        KUPPET’s enjoyment  of the  Agency Fee was  strongly  aided and supported  by the TSC and exclusion of KNUT is a product of blackmail  by the TSC.

Finally,  we wish  to state  that KNUT is  an experienced global  Union of many years  and  is   highly  desirous  of  peaceful  industrial  relations  in  the  teaching service,  employment  and  retention  of  well-motivated,  well  paid  teachers enjoying unified and equal terms and conditions of service managed  under the strict terms  of the Constitution,  TSC Act,  Code of Regulations for Teachers  and the CBA.

TSC therefore cannot elect to operate outside all these instruments and engage in a futile attempt to finish off KNUT and silence its members.

It must choose the part of Compliance with the law and conducting its business within the law and not outside the law.

Even with these  attacks, KNUT shall not give  up even an inch of what is right  to all  teachers  and  we shall  not  be  shut  down  from  being a free, vibrant and independent trade Union.

An injury to one is  an injury to all.  Non-payment of CBA benefits even to one teacher is an injury to the entire teaching fraternity.  We call upon the Cabinet Secretary,  Ministry of Labour – Hon. Simon Chelugui to immediately take over the  matter  before it  deteriorates  into  serious  industrial  unrest  and put TSC to order in the management of teachers.

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