Students bear the brunt of strike as dons stay away

Thursday November 2 2017

A student at Technical University of Mombasa

A student at Technical University of Mombasa studying on her own after lecturers went on strike in this picture taken on November 2, 2017. PHOTO | LABAN WALLOGA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By NATION TEAM
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Public university students started to feel the effect of the lecturers’ strike which entered its second day Thursday as a number of them went without classes.

This is as the University Academic Staff Union insisted that the strike would only be called off after the government releases Sh5.2 billion to cater for the new salary and house allowances.

Uasu secretary-general Constantine Wasonga said the strike was holding well except in some of their chapters such as Dedan Kimathi University.

NO LECTURES

“We are putting on notice universities that are not participating in the strike,” warned Dr Wasonga.

At Multimedia University, Uasu branch secretary Onesmus Mutiso said learning had been paralysed since there were no lectures going on.

Mr Mutiso warned that a graduation ceremony slated for next week will not take place until their demands are met.

“Three universities are paying using the new salary scale yet others are reluctant to pay; that is unacceptable. They must pay,” said Mr Mutiso.

The institutions are Chuka, Machakos and Jaramogi Oginga Odinga.

DEMANDS

At Technical University of Mombasa, chapter chairman Joseph Ngare said around 260 academic staff had withdrawn their services.

Mr Ngare said students would be left to study on their own until the government meets their demands.

The students had just returned after a one week break from the October 26 presidential repeat poll.

“We want compliance with the terms of the CBA which means adjustment of salaries and house allowances,” Mr Ngare said.

He said the strike is meant to push the government to fully implement their CBA.

BOYCOTT

The less than 10 lecturers chanted solidarity songs outside the graduation square, as heavy rains pounding Mombasa hampered their demonstration within the university.

In Nakuru, learning was also paralysed at Egerton University as lecturers boycotted work.

Students told the Nation that no lectures were taking place since the strike started on Wednesday.

Continuous assessment tests had been scheduled to begin yesterday but were postponed indefinitely.

The students said that the strike would affect the academic calendar.

Mr Ahmed Abdulahi, a fourth year student, said they would have a hard time completing their research projects without guidance from their lecturers.

Reports by Ouma Wanzala, Winnie Atieno, Linet Amuli and Lameck Willy.