May 28, 2022
COTU Secretary General Francis Atwoli
  • The Central Organization of Trade Union (COTU) Secretary General, Francis Atwoli, says that the government will revisit the mandate of the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) after the August 9 polls.

    Speaking during a meeting with COTU affiliate bodies on Saturday, April 9, Atwoli accused SRC of overstepping its role by trying to control public institutions.

    He opined that the commission led by Lyn Mengich should be an advisory body, hinting at a possible revision of its role under the new government after the upcoming election.

    An undated image of COTU Secretary General Francis Atwoli addressing the press.
    The Standard
    Collins Oduor

    “The first thing we are going to do after this election is to pressurize the government either to moderate or make changes on SRC. It is supposed to be an advisory body,” remarked the COTU boss.

    Atwoli accused the state agency of imposing a two-year freeze on discussions to review upwards salaries of public servants until the end of the 2022/ 2023 Financial Year.

    “We negotiate based on the enterprises economic development on free and take, but SRC is trying to control these institutions, which is not good for them because we have some parastatals that are making a lot of money and they need to increase wages of their workers,” noted Atwoli.

    On the 2022/23 Financial Year budget, Atwoli noted that it was not favourable to the common mwananchi, especially those who are salaried. This, he noted, was due to the new taxes introduced on some basic commodities.

    “I have seen a lot of areas that the budget should have touched but the budget has not. Instead, it introduced unnecessary taxation which will hurt workers, but we are coming up with an economic paper that we will present before the government as far as the 2022/2023 budget is concerned.”

    However, the COTU boss lauded National Treasury Cabinet Secretary, Ukur Yatani, for preparing and presenting the budget earlier, noting that the country was politically charged and that it would give workers’ union time to adjust itself.

    At the same time, Atwoli, on April 6, dismissed a report by the Ministry of Labour putting the number of workers covered by Collective Bargaining Agreements (CBAs) at 16,100, arguing that it was politically instigated ahead of the Labour Day negotiations.

    He insisted that an in-house analysis of its members, the number of workers covered under COTU stands at 2.3 million and another 2 million who benefitted indirectly.

    “There are currently2,356,406 working Kenyans who are covered by CBAs as negotiated by the various unions under the COTU (K) umbrella.

    “Guided by research that indicates a rise in economic performance but equally a rise in inflation which has eroded the purchasing power of Kenyan workers, we will ensure that Kenyan workers get what they deserve during the negotiations,” Atwoli stated.

    An image of Lyn Mengich
    Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) Chairperson Lyn Mengich in a press briefing on May 15th 2019.
    Business Daily
  • Source: KENYAGIST.COM

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