TSC back to court to contest teachers’ pay rise

The Teachers Service Commission (TSC) has moved to the Supreme Court seeking a review of its earlier orders directing that teachers be paid the 50 – 60% pay rise awarded by Industrial Court.

TSC argues that the Supreme Court erred in its ruling to allow teachers to get the pay rise awarded by a lower court.

The teachers’ employer now wants to Supreme Court to reverse its earlier decision and stop the payment of the pay increase.

This comes as the Treasury says it is unable to finance the 50-60% teachers’ pay rise awarded by the court, borrowing to finance recurrent expenditure against Public Finance Act.

According to the Treasury in a letter to the TSC ,the additional requirement for eleven months of the Financial year 2015/2016 will be Ksh. 20.1 billion, an amount that was not budgeted for.

“We believe that raising taxes to fund the award will have a negative impact on the growth of the economy and on jobs creation, and is therefore not advisable,” read the Treasury letter to the TSC.

“In view of the foregoing, the National Treasury is not able to provide the additional funding required to implement the salary award,” read the letter.

Last month, the TSC filed a petition at the Supreme Court seeking to stop a ruling awarding teachers a salary increment of between 50 to 60 percent.

The petition, which was been certified as urgent, came a week after the Court of Appeal upheld a decision by the Industrial and Labour Relations Court to award teachers the increment pending the hearing of the case on September 22nd, 2015.

In June this year, Court ordered the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) to increase teachers’ salary from between 50 to 60 per cent dating back to July 2013 to cover up to July 2017.

Judge Justice Nduma Nderi ordered that the pay increase agreement between the teachers’ union, Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) and the Teachers Service Commission should be registered with the court within 30 days.

The ruling marked a new phase of the protracted battle between teachers and the TSC after years of contention over increment that led to nationwide strikes.

The TSC had taken their remuneration battle to the Employment and Labour Relations Court after the January 2015 strike that paralysed education around the country.

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Maureen Murimi
Story By Maureen Murimi
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