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Railway workers in Nairobi down tools over unpaid June salaries

The Rift Valley Railway employees in Nairobi yesterday boycotted work over unpaid dues, paralyzing part of commuter train services in the city.

Several employees told the Star that they are yet to receive last month salary and that RVR has remained non committal.

They added that their employer had not been emitting their pension benefits to their pension fund for the last one year.

The boycott affected commuters from Ruiru, Embakassi, Syokimau and Kikuyu lines, leaving only the Nairobi – Mombasa- Madaraka Express line in operation.

Employees feared that they might lose their wages and retirement benefits now that the firm’s operations are set to be terminated at the end of the month.

Last week the court gave RVR 30 days to oversee the smooth transfer of assets and operations to Kenya Railways Corporation following the termination of a 25 year old contract to run the Kenya-Uganda railway.

Today’s strike follows another one by Uganda workers that commenced on July 27, affecting activities across the five stations of Kampala, Jinja, Iganga, Busembatia and Tororo.

More than 400 workers of Rift Valley Railways Uganda downed tools to demand for their June and July salaries that were delayed due to cash flow problems.

According to RVR Group chief executive officer Isaiah Okoth, most funds had been used to pay RVRU suppliers as it had been ordered by the court. He also attributed the delayed payment to poor cash collection by the RVRU team.

Kenya Railways managing director Atanus Maina, however, told media that that the Rift Valley Railways was resolving the matter.

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