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How VCs screwed up Sh1.6 billion CBA cash payout

How VCs screwed up Sh1.6 billion CBA cash payout

Universities botched the implementation of employee salaries, resulting in a near-loss of Sh1.6 billion.

An audit on salary payment revealed that most institutions used skewed methods to reward staff, according to officials from three university workers unions.

This was part of the Sh6.6 billion salary package under the Collective Bargaining Agreement, which ran from 2011 to 2017. (CBA).

The funds were intended to benefit approximately 30,000 members of the Universities Academic Staff Union (UASU), Kenya Union of Domestic, Hotels, Educational Institutions, and Hospital Workers (KUDHEIHA), and Kenya Universities Staff Union (KUDHEIHA) (KUSU).

It was also revealed that the CBA has yet to be fully implemented at those six universities. Egerton, Kisii, Murang’a, Embu, Rongo, and the Technical University of Kenya are the six (TUK).

Union officials claimed that the VCs were planning to defraud their members.

‘‘We saved the taxpayers as a result of that audit Sh1.6 billion because when we were complaining that the vice-chancellors have bungled the CBA money and remained with balances nobody believed us,” said Constantine Wasonga, UASU secretary-general.

He was flanked by KUDHEIHA Secretary General Albert Njeru and KUSU President Dr Charles Mukhwaya.

They blamed VCs for implementing the CBA haphazardly, contrary to court orders, and for retaining balances.

Njeru stated that their employees have been working in vain to learn their correct staffing positions. “Workers have been placed in positions where they should not have been.” In terms of grading, you can find a worker who has been in the same grade and a causal employee for nearly 20 years,” Njeru said.

Mukhwaya stated that the VCs of the six universities should either honour the CBA or join the workers in demanding their wages.  ‘’I also call upon the six vice-chancellors to resign because they are in contempt of court on CBA.”

The first three years, according to the unions, were well paid, but problems began after the third year.

Different methods were used to calculate arrears for staff members from July 2017 to June 2019 according to Wasonga.

He stated that six methods were used to calculate arrears for employees of the same grade.

They included a simple horizontal method, swinging, and stepwise, which differed from the diagonal method .

Wasonga cited an example in which an employee in the same grade and with the same qualification received Sh134,112 using the horizontal method.

The staff earned Sh40,452 in swinging horizontal and Sh146,040 in stepwise. The staff received Sh295,860 using the diagonal method.

He claimed that the horizontal method was used by the majority of universities, including Bomet, Chuka, Cooperative, Garissa, Jomo Kenyatta, Jaramogi Oginga Odinga, Kibabii, Kisii, Koitalel, Nairobi, and Masinde Muliro.

The diagonal method was used by only three universities: Alupe University College, Maasai Mara, and Turkana. ’They paid the arrears for three years as negotiated and we congratulate them,’’ he said.

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The stepwise method was used by Laikipia, Machakos, Rongo, and Technical University, while the swinging method was used by Egerton, Kirinyaga, Dedan Kimathi, and Kaimosi Friends University College.

Multi-Media University was singled out for failing to employ any of the methods. In addition, 25 universities were commended for correctly paying monthly salaries as of January 15, 2021, but they did not pay arrears.

Wasonga also stated that the union was unable to obtain the rates they were using from some universities.

How VCs screwed up Sh1.6 billion CBA cash payout


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