19 January 2013

Kenya: Mombasa Council Workers On Strike Over Delayed Salary Deal

MORE than 2,000 workers at Mombasa Municipal Council went on strike yesterday demanding a salary raise.

The workers were protesting a delay in signing of a collective bargaining agreement by Local Government Minister Paul Otuoma.

The workers under the banner of Kenya Local Government and Allied Workers Union said that the signing of the CBA was long overdue and the delay was a ploy to deny them their rights.

The move comes two days after Otuoma dissolved the councils to pave way for the March 4 general election.

Mombasa branch union secretary general Rashid Muteti led the workers into peaceful demonstrations through the Mombasa's CBD to the council offices at Treasury Square where they presented their demands.

"The protest will not be over until we get our dues. We want the minister to sign that CBA immediately so that we can get our salary increment," said Muteti.

Muteti also added that the CBA was supposed to be signed in November and to be followed by immediate implementation.

The CBA when signed and implemented will see the workers' salaries increased between 60 and 30 per cent respectively according to their scale.

Currently the lowest worker is paid Sh16,000 and the increment if given a nod by Otuoma will see their pay rise to Sh25,000.

Meanwhile, the workers also claimed that they had not received their salaries for the last two months despite working for the council.

The union's branch chairman Suleiman Mohamed said, "We want the municipal council to update their pay roll or else we shall not go back as well even if the Otuoma signs the CBA."

When reached for comment, Mombasa town clerk Tubman Otieno denied the delays but admitted that the workers had not received the December salary.

"What I know is that the council is up to date on the salary issues. What I owe them is December salary and my treasurer is working. They will be paid by today," said Tubman on phone.

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