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Feud ends: Sossion, TSC strike sweetheart deal

By Kamau Muthoni | Published Sat, September 29th 2018 at 00:00, Updated September 28th 2018 at 19:21 GMT +3

Knut Secretary General Wilson Sossion (pictured) can now serve as a Member of Parliament and execute duties of the giant union after a compromise deal with the teachers’ employer.

The Teachers Service Commission (TSC) has sealed a deal with the Kenya National Union of Teachers to retain his seat even as he serves as MP.

The teachers’ employer penned an agreement with Sossion’s lawyer Jackson Awele before the Employment and Labour Relations Court hence ending the tiff that started last year after he was nominated by the Orange Democratic Movement as an MP.

“The case is marked as withdrawn and that the registrar do retain the second petitioner (Sossion) as secretary general to the first petitioner (Knut),” Justice Maureen Onyango ruled.

TSC had sacked both Sossion and Kenya Post Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET) Secretary General Amboko Milemba and chairman for joining politics.

TSC wrote to the two informing them they are no longer teachers.

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This decision placed TSC and the unionists in a precarious situation as the law requires one to be a teacher to vie for any position in the unions.

Bomet Central MP Ronald Tunoi has also faced the axe.

Regulation 187 (1) and (2) of the Code of Regulations for Teachers dictates that teachers who seek elective positions and are holding trade union positions to resign or retire from service.

“The commission has decided to terminate your services as a teacher with effect from January 15, 2018,” the sack letter written by TSC boss and Nancy Macharia read in part.

“It has been noted that you were nominated as a Member of Parliament yet the Commission has not received your resignation or retirement letter.”

Then Labour Cabinet Secretary Phyllis Kandie also gave a notice to all unionists who had sailed to Parliament to vacate their offices.

In the gazette notice, she intended that Mr Milemba, Mr Sossion and Union of Kenya Civil Servants Secretary General Tom Odege would relinquish their positions for a new crop of leaders to take over.

But they defied by moving to court in which Justice Nelson Abuodha temporarily suspended the implementation of the notice.

TSC first sent termination notices to the three on December 14 last year.

Sossion then replied saying his nomination was meant to represent workers in in Parliament. He insisted that there was no reason for quitting as Knut SG.

“While I acknowledge the fact that I took oath of office as a nominated Member of Parliament, the nomination into the particular office was to represent workers and their interest (sic) in the National Assembly as a specially recognised category,” Sossion wrote on January 9, 2018 in response to TSC’s notice of termination.

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