TSC set to permanently lock out Knut members from CBA

TSC set to permanently lock out Knut members from CBA

The Teachers Service Commission (TSC) has hatched a plan that will see teachers belonging to Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) locked out for good and miss out the ksh. 54 billion CBA benefits.

Teachers who are yet to self exit from the union on T-Pay will no longer be able to do so after November payroll closes as the portal will no longer be made available for the service.

The teachers will also not be able to enjoy the benefits of the CBA.

Many teachers have been logging on the T-Pay and self exit from the union so as not to miss the benefits of the CBA.

School administrators have been paid four phases where as classroom teachers in specific grades have enjoyed automatic promotion in line with CPG terms.

TSC has been threatening to quash TSC – Knut recognition agreement over dwindling union membership.

Knut membership has dropped by 78% since 2019 and the numbers keep falling.

In 2016 TSC had signed a CBA that ran from 2017 to 2021 with teachers unions Knut and Kuppet and which Wilson Sossion had hailed as the best CBA the union has ever signed with the employer.

In 2019 TSC had claimed the CBA introduced a paradigm shift in the remuneration of teachers which was hitherto not dependent on the worth of the job, as now provided, but on the job group of a teacher.

All non Knut teachers fall under Career Progression Guidelines (CPG), a tool that TSC developed for implementing the CBA, and are eligible for promotion.

Knut members have been locked out of administrative and automatic promotions due to their Schemes of Service (SoS).

TSC has said that it will advertise TPC courses for Knut members to undertake before they get considered for any promotion.

Knut has long held that TSC has been running two payrolls to lock out its members, a move the union claims has eroded its membership register since June last year.

However Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) in a report last month said that TSC rightfully implemented the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), the job evaluation report and the Career Progression Guidelines (CPG), effectively absolving the teachers’ employer from any blame.

The audit by SRC was conducted based on Knut secretary general Wilson Sossion letter dated November 26, 2019, to Lyn Mengich, SRC chairperson.

“Knut calls for timely intervention to save tormented Kenyan teachers from further suffering, some of whom have lost a big chunk of their pay through illegal exclusion from the CBA,” Sossion had said.

SRC also dismissed the claim that the court order discriminated against Knut members saying that its investigations revealed that all teachers are remunerated the same.

Knut membership has shrunk from 187,471 in June last year to 45,217 in September 2020 and monthly earnings dropped from 144 million to 32.9 million.

Knut also earns about Sh17 million from tenants at Knut House in Mfangano.

The union revenue has dropped from Sh144 million to a paltry Sh37 million.

Overall, Knut lost more than Sh1 billion for the last 15 months, crippling its operations and straining industrial relationship with TSC.

The union is unable to finance operations in its 110 branches, which receive money from the headquarters on based on membership.

Union branch officials have gone without salaries and rising rent arrears may see some branches thrown out of their premises.

“Knut is financially crippled as it has been deprived of resources and cannot meet most of its financial obligations,” Mr Sossion said during World Teachers Day.

Knut has suffered many blows since its protracted wars with TSC.

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