TSC issues notice to terminate KNUT recognition agreement


TSC issues notice to terminate KNUT recognition agreement
KNUT Secretary General Wilson Sossion during a past press address. PHOTO | FILE

The Teachers Service Commission (TSC) has issued a two-month notice to terminate its recognition agreement with the Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT).

In a letter to KNUT dated November 4, the commission’s CEO Nancy Macharia says the agreement signed 51 years ago will be revoked on grounds that the union’s membership numbers are currently below the requisite simple majority.

“Pursuant to the provisions of clause 2 of the Recognition Agreement existing between the Teachers Service Commission and the Kenya National Union of Teachers and section 4 (1) of the Labour Relations Act, 2007, the commission hereby issues a two months notice to KNUT to terminate and/revoke the Recognition Agreement dated 15th May, 1968 on the following grounds:

“The Kenya National Union of Teachers does not have the simple majority of unionisable employees under the employment of the Teachers Service Commission as at November 4, 2019,” reads the letter.

Should TSC terminate its recognition agreement with KNUT, it would mean the union can no longer bargain on behalf of teachers.

“An employer, including an employer in the public sector, shall recognise a trade union for purposes of collective bargaining if that trade union represents the simple majority of unionisable employees,” reads Section 54(1) of the Labour Relations Act 2007.

In the notice to KNUT, TSC says it has already written to the National Labour Board to have the recognition agreement terminated.

“Take notice that in view of Section 54(5) of the Labour Relations Act, the Commission has simultaneously made the requisite application to the National Labour Board,” adds the letter.

This marks a new high in the protracted dispute between the teachers employer and the Wilson Sossion-led union.

Last week, TSC formally terminated Sossion’s contract as a teacher.

In a Gazette notice dated October 29, TSC further blacklisted Sossion from teaching in any school whether private or public.

“The Teachers Service Commission has removed the name of the individual named herein (Wilson Sossion) from the register of teachers. Further under the law, the individual cannot engage in teaching in any school,” reads the notice.

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