23 May 2019

Kenya: City Hall Workers to Finally Receive 15% Pay Raise

Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has announced that his administration is ready to implement a Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) with its workers from next month.

The implementation of the 2012 CBA has been delayed for months now as a result of protracted court case pitting the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) against City Hall and the workers union.

However, Governor Sonko has said that they will finally implement the contents of the deal which was to see county employees enjoy a salary increment of between 15 and 28 percent, among other benefits.

"The High Court on Monday dismissed a petition by SRC and this has now paved the way for us to finally honour the deal. We will implement the CBA this coming month," said Mr Sonko during the launch of a biometric registration and identification system for the county workers at City Hall on Wednesday.

SALARY INCREMENT

In February this year, striking City Hall workers, led by Kenya County Government Workers Union (KCGWU) Nairobi branch secretary Benson Olianga, went on strike for several days demanding that SRC gives in to their demand for a salary increment and the implementation of the return-to-work formula deal with the county government.

Governor Sonko had also blamed SRC for the standoff, accusing it of rejecting the deal entered in May 2017, although the county had set aside some funds in its supplementary budget to honour the deal.

This was after the Governor, in December last year, promised to implement a 15 per cent pay hike deal struck between the county government and the workers union in May 2017 which was later registered in September 2018.

He said the workers were demanding salary increment of between 15 and 28 percent translating to approximately Sh100 million, in an agreement signed in May 2017 that City Hall had promised would be effected in January this year.

PROTRACTED NEGOTIATION

The CBA was registered before Labour court's Judge Nelson Abuodha, paving way for workers from all cadres to get a pay increment of at least 15 percent and all that was remaining was the implementation.

The registration ended a protracted negotiation that started in 2015. Under the terms of the agreement, the pay rise was to take effect in 2017/2018 financial year, but that never happened even though the county set aside Sh800 million to cater for the CBA.

Nevertheless, SRC went to court calling for the CBA to be set aside and new negotiations initiated with all the decisions that led to the agreement reverted and both parties to restart the negotiations to settle on a negotiable figure.

A standoff between City Hall workers and the SRC ensued which later headed to the corridors of justice where the union officials were summoned before the Labour and Employment Court.

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