The fate of teachers and civil servants salary increment in August will largely depend on the outcome of the Court ruling on Finance Act 2023 next week.
The ruling by three judges will be made on 13th August 2023 and will determine whether the government will implement the salary increment order for public servants that was issued by President Ruto.
Teachers and civil servants are expecting a payrise in August with arrears backdated from 1st July.
Though the Act was suspended, the Court of Appeal lifted a conservatory order on the Finance Act, paving the way for its implementation.
Justices Mohamed Warsame, Kathurima M’inoti and Hedwig Omondi observed that there will be irreversible economic consequences if the order is not lifted.
“The upshot of our decision is that the application has merit and the same is allowed as prayed with the effect that the order made on 10th July 2023 suspending the Finance Act 2023, and the order prohibiting the implementation of the Finance Act 2023, be and is hereby lifted pending the hearing and determination of the appeal,” the judges ruled Friday.
The judges ruled that the act cannot be suspended indefinitely given the effects it will have on taxation and government spending that is already crippled.
In their ruling, the judges, however, said all the parties shall abide by the final outcome of the appeal to be made next week.
The Law Society of Kenya (LSK) has moved to the Court of Appeal to challenge the Finance Act.
Announcing the salary increment of between 7% to 10% for teachers and civil servants, President William Ruto said this is to cushion public servants from the harsh economic times.
Dr. Ruto ordered the payrise to be effected starting 1st July 2023. This means teachers and civil servants were to get new salaries beginning end of July when the July salaries were to be paid.
The July non-payment was however attributed to delays by the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) in calculating the increments.
SRC has completed the salary review after concluding the public participation exercise.
The commission will gazette the new salaries so that government departments which include TSC and Public Service Commission (PSC) can implement the increase.
“The most important thing is the effective date of the increase. Even if they don’t get the increment this month, they will get it later, taking into account the month of July,” said a source at SRC.
The Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (Kuppet) however revealed that the July salary increment for teachers was tied to the passage of the Finance Act 2023.
Kuppet Secretary-General Akello Misori says the payrise for teachers will depend on the implementation of the Finance Act 2023.
He however blamed both the SRC and the TSC for failing to reach an agreement in time hence making teachers miss on July increment.
Mr Misori said Kuppet and SRC held a five-hour “consultative meeting” with Dr Ruto at State House in May, where the President assured officials that teachers would get a minimum 10 per cent pay rise “upon the passage of the 2023-2024 Finance Bill”.
“This is unfortunate because we may be shocked to find out that it’s not 10 or 12 per cent as we expected; then it means we have been deceived,” he said.