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County workers threaten to strike over pay deal

Nairobi county staff are threatening to down their tools on Tuesday over unpaid arrears and what they term as disregard of a collective bargaining agreement.

The workers, under Kenya County Governments Workers Union, have vowed to grind City hall’s operations to a halt.

Speaking to NairobiNews, the union’s Nairobi branch chair Benson Olianga said the workers will not resume duty unless Governor Evans Kidero pays their dues and signs a recognition agreement.

“We had a Collective Bargaining Agreement in September 2012 which was supposed to be implemented last year yet till today we have not received the arrears. We cannot wait forever,” he said.

Mr Olianga further stated that county workers have not been receiving travelling allowance which was part of the deal.

The union also vowed to block a move by the county government to demote some of its staff.

According to the union, over 200 employees have been downgraded from job group 13 to 14 and 15 and have received pay cuts ranging from Sh4,000 to Sh6,000.

“Those being downgraded had qualified for their position and justifying demotions on the ground that the do not have degrees is unlawful,” Olianga said.

“The Supervisor of a sweeper does not need a degree. Its his experience and knowledge that matters,” he said.

He also claimed that the county government is trying to splinter the workers’ union by enjoining Civil Servants Workers Union into their agreements.

“We are aware that the Governor is now bringing other people from the Civil Servants Union and we know they are working against the interests of the city employees,” he said.