The Kenya Union of post Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET) has called on the leadership of the Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) to drop its hardline stand and sort out its differences with the Teachers Service Commission (TSC).
KUPPET national chairman, Omboko Milemba said the current stalemate between KNUT and TSC was not healthy for industrial relations, adding that the tough stand by both parties has left more than 200,000 teachers without trade union representation.
Speaking in Siaya town Sunday after commissioning a welfare bus bought by KUPPET Siaya branch, Milemba who is also the member of parliament for Emuhaya constituency said he was ready to support KNUT secretary general, Wilson Sosion in the negotiations with TSC which will culminate in the restoration of the sister Union’s membership.
“I am urging my brother Wilson Sosion to come down and sit down with TSC. I am willing to lend a hand so that we go with him,” he said.
Milemba called on Sosion and the KNUT leadership to withdraw court cases lodged against the teachers’ employer as a sign of good will.
The KUPPET national chairman denied that his union was a beneficiary of the stalemate, adding that no KNUT member had joined them.
He said that KUPPET was registered to serve post primary education institutions and secondary school teachers and therefore cannot accommodate the bulk of KNUT members.
“We shall not even invite them because if they come into KUPPET, soon we shall be KNUT and because they have high numbers, we shall lose the dream which we originally had of representing this sector and cadre of education,” said the national chairman who was flanked by Siaya branch executive secretary, Sam Opondo.
He said that the country needs strong unions for the teachers, hence the need to have both KNUT and KUPPET and a strong umbrella for the Kenyan workers.
by Philip Onyango