University lectures have rejected a second salary increase offer from the government as Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i warned that no lecturer will be paid until they resume work.
The lecturers rejected a salary increase of 18 per cent insisting that they will only take 30 per cent salary increase per year for four years.
“We were given figures of the proposal by Inter public university consultative council forum of the offer to university staff. I don’t think any further money will be forthcoming this financial year given the stage of the National budget process. My view is that this is a good offer,” said Masinde Muliro University Vice-chancellor.
However, the University Academic Staff Union (Uasu) Secretary-General Constantine Wasonga dismissed the offer saying that it is not what they had asked for.
“Tuesday’s offer is old wine in new wines skins, we pleaded with the forum and government to be serious, withdrawing our salaries will not work, we were already starving,” said Dr Wasonga.
Last month, the lecturers rejected Sh10 billion that was offered by the government saying it translates to 3.2 per cent in basic salary and 1.6 per cent in house allowance and Sh2 billion would go to the employer as employee’s component of pension contribution.
The money was supposed to benefit 30,312 university staff among them 9,000 lecturers.
Salaries and remuneration commission (SRC) has directed that no house allowance for lecturers should be increased as they had demanded.
In an advisory opinion to Universities management, SRC Chief executive officer Anne Gitau said house allowance for university staff should be retained at the current rates while Sh10billion be spread equally without a compounding factor over four-year cycle of the CBA to meet the cost of review for basic salaries and employees’ pension bill.
Speaking on Wednesday at Catholic University, Dr Matiang’i said he had advised Vice Chancellors of Public Universities not to pay salaries to lecturers on strike, saying the advice was grounded in the laws of the country.
“Why do you want to make money when you have not worked?” Dr Matiang’i posed.
He said the education system need to be values based saying selfishness among Kenyans had undermined the progress of the country.
The CS said with all strikes ranging from doctors to lecturers it was unfair to subject Kenyans to such suffering.
The lecturers said the government had presented Sh10 billion counter offer but dressed it in different mathematics.
The lectures now want the government to explain where a Sh4.8 billion discussed by the budget committee went.
“What happened to the additional Sh4.8 billion that was discussed by Rev Mutava Musyimi Budget committee?, Who wants to pocket this sum?, he posed.