28 Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) workers who were sacked five years ago have appealed to President Uhuru Kenyatta and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga to intervene and ensure they are reinstated or given back their terminal dues.
The 28 who were Dock Workers Union (DWU) officials were dismissed in July 2015 for allegedly participating in a strike to protest new National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) rates.
“We humbly appeal to the President Uhuru and Honourable Raila to intervene on our behalf and that of our families by ordering our immediate reinstatement so that we may also celebrate the Christmas and New Year like other families,” said the group in a statement ready by former assistant Secretary General Abubakar Mohamed.
The group claimed that they were summarily dismissed on July 2 2015 and although the Labour and Employment court ruled that they be given terminal dues, their employer KPA, has not complied.
Influential Business people
The group said they had suffered since they were kicked out of the port and blamed influential businesspeople for the plights for allegedly opposing terminal freight station deal when they were in union.
“We ceased acting for the union as officials and we therefore do not understand why someone will want us subjected to suffering for all these years,” Mohamed said.
Former DWU vice chairman Mr Michael Kituku claimed the union has abandoned the group since they were sacked.
However DWU Secretary General Simon Sang said the matter has been forwarded to the Central Organisation of Trade Unions (COTU) which in turn raised it with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) for arbitration.
“The union is the only saviour for the group. We have reported the matter to COTU which in turn took it up with ILO and it will be acted upon in June next year,” Sang said.
He confirmed that the court had given the 28 a reprieve and were supposed to be given their terminal dues or reinstated.
KPA claimed the workers had participated in an illegal strike citing section K4(c) of the KPA disciplinary Handbook 2015.