Cotu opposes new TSC code of conduct for teachers

The Central Organisation of Trade Unions (Cotu) has opposed the new code of conduct for teachers terming them “archaic and a violation of the Constitution.”

The giant workers’ body Secretary General Francis Atwoli said the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) has violated the Constitution on human rights and freedom of association.

Among the regulations that Cotu strongly opposed include the decision by TSC to bar teachers from participating in any strike, join politics or support a political party.

“You cannot stop any worker from going on strike, strike is guaranteed in the Constitution, unless TSC amends the Constitution through a referendum, we will not allow such archaic laws to be implemented,” Atwoli said at a press conference at solidarity building Nairobi.

Atwoli said the labor practice worldwide allows every worker to go on strike and belong to any political party that he deems fit.

“The constitution of Kenya is pegged on culture and traditions and therefore TSC cannot punish teachers for exercising their constitutional right,” Atwoli said.

The Secretary General also said all Kenyans, including teachers have freedom of association and therefore it’s a violation of the constitution for TSC to deny teachers the opportunity to belong to any political party of their choice.

“Teachers are professionals, they can decide to join politics it’s their choice. TSC cannot limit the people or organizations that teachers should belong to or associate with,” Atwoli.

He said that should TSC refuse to rescind some the rules infringing on the rights of teachers they will go to court to block their implementation.

“We will go to court and block everything they have, we cannot watch as our constitution, which Kenyans overwhelmingly voted for, is violated,” he said.

He also urged the government to review the regulations developed by TSC and make in line with the law.

“We know TSC is acting on someone’s directive, they cannot do these things on their own and therefore the government in this case must come in with a solution,” Atwoli said.

The new code of conduct was released on Monday in Mombasa by TSC Chief Executive Officer Nancy Macharia

The new rules warn teachers against supporting or opposing any political party during elections.

The rules also require teachers to declare the source of their wealth and have their accounts subjected to audits immediately they quit service.

According to the rules, no teacher shall act as an agent of any political party or as a contestant and they are expected to account for every hour they spend in schools

 

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