The Cabinet Secretary for Education, George Magoha, has refuted rumors that universities across the country are planning to go on strike beginning on Monday, September 12.
Magoha stated that no notice of planned industrial action had been received by the Ministry of Education.
He continued by saying he was dedicated to finding solutions to problems facing universities.
Staging a strike without informing the relevant authorities, he argued, amounted to breaching labour laws as enshrined in the Constitution.
I do not remember getting a strike notice from any university. If a strike is not protected, then you know what happens,” he explained.
He went on to say that issues of capitation and infrastructure development will be tackled by the incoming William Ruto government.
His views follow those of the Universities Academic Workers Union (UASU), which has expressed concern that many public universities and colleges are unable to adequately pay their teaching and support staff.
UASU national organising secretary, Onesmus Mutio, attributed it to the delays in the late remittance of funds by the National Treasury.
“It is not our mandate to ensure that the government releases money on time. Vice-chancellors should be able to engage the National Treasury,” Mutio told Nation Africa on Saturday, September 10.
As a result, the union is pressing for a complete rollout of the CBA for 2017–21.
On the other hand, lecturers have sought out to the President-elect William Ruto, pleading with him to make it a top priority to solve the problems that are plaguing universities. Further, they pleaded with the next leader to fund and improve access to TVETS centers.
“We are optimistic that Ruto, being an academic giant himself, will urgently and effectively put in mechanisms to rescue public universities languishing in choking debt,” they stated.
Their concerns come even as universities continue to grapple with debts. The escalating indebtedness of Moi University, Kenyatta University, and the University of Nairobi were uncovered by Auditor General Nancy Gathungu in 2021.
Gathungu suggested that the institutions downsize their staff and budgets.