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TSC accuses Sossion of misleading teachers

Employer advises tutors to ignore Knut’s ‘misguided’ directives, threatens action on those who burned appraisal material last week

Teachers’ employer has accused the Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) of misleading its members on the outcome of their recent meeting.

In what could renew a row between the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) and Knut officials, the former accused the union of distorting facts on agreed issues.

They cited an incident in which Knut claimed TSC had agreed to promote 30,000 teachers during their recent meeting. On promotion of 30,000 teachers, TSC Head of Corporate Communications Kihumba Kamotho yesterday reiterated it had not made any such promise to Knut, adding that there are currently no due promotions.

TSC remarks come just days after Knut suspended a planned nationwide strike pending ongoing talks to iron out various issues.

Kamotho said after a lengthy deliberations with Knut, they agreed to defer all issues until September 28, when the two parties kick off a five-day retreat to comprehensively address matters arising from implementation of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA).

He termed “misguided”  directive by Knut officials, especially secretary general Wilson Sossion, to members on performance appraisals and other administrative duties.

Late last month, Sossion directed teachers not to fill appraisal forms which he said were a waste of time. And last week, teachers in some parts of the country burned appraisal material.

But TSC yesterday advised teachers to ignore such directives in the interest of their contract with the commission.

TSC said it will ensure teachers who may have participated in burning of official documents are brought to book and made to take professional and criminal responsibility for their action.

Kamotho also accused Knut of attempts to sabotage curriculum implementation programmes by inciting teachers to defy their employer, a situation he termed regrettable and unfortunate.

“Immediately after the meeting and on subsequent occasions, Sossion and other union officials have chosen to continue misleading teachers by telling falsehoods. This is regrettable and unfortunate,” he said in a statement.

Some of the issues the TSC has now clarified include transfer of teachers. Teachers who fail to proceed on transfer as directed will be dealt with in accordance with the Code of Regulations for teachers, Kamotho warned.

“The transfer function is exercised to ensure equity in distribution of teachers and optimal utilisation of the available teachers. This notwithstanding, any transfer appeal will be treated on case-by-case basis and only after the teacher has taken up the transfer, as has been the practice,” the statement read in part.

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