Lecturers have announced that they will not step into university classrooms from January 20, even as the country gears up for the start of a fresh academic calendar.
Universities Academic Staff Union (Uasu) Secretary-General Constantine Wasonga said Thursday that lecturers will go on strike after the government failed to honour a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) signed on October 28 last year.
The move is bound to paralyse learning in about 35 public institutions.
Dr Wasonga said that as a result of the calculation after the last negotiations with government, the figure owed stood at Sh13.8 billion without pension.
However, the university dons on Thursday said they were ready to take Sh8.8 billion for 2017-2021 CBA to avert the industrial action.
“It appears the government has diverted the money and that is why we are being treated to double speak by SRC and the Ministry of Education,” said Dr Wasonga, who was accompanied by other union officials during a press conference in Nairobi.
Dr Wasonga said that even though the union had demanded more, it would accept Sh8.8 billion due to the hard economic times in the country.
The announcement comes a day after public university vice-chancellors held a crisis meeting in Nairobi where they appealed to their staff to give dialogue a chance following a standoff between them and Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) over how much should be paid to staff in the 2017-2021 collective bargaining agreement (CBA).
The CBA was signed in October last year and university staff had expected that the increase would be implemented immediately but standoff with SRC has stalled everything.