A Nairobi court has temporarily barred the Public Service Commission (PSC) and Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) from firing or victimising county staff who are yet to comply with secondment under the deed of transfer of functions.
The Employment and Labour Relations court stopped the two agencies from harassing or intimidating workers who did not show up for redeployment on April 6 and 7 at Uhuru Park, Nairobi, and those who showed up but failed to provide their national and work identification cards.
The orders were issued after the Kenya County Government Workers Union (KCGWU) moved to court seeking to quash the secondment of 6,852 workers from City Hall to NMS by the national government.
The union was also protesting what it termed a violation of the fundamental human rights and freedoms of the workers as enshrined in Chapter Four of the Constitution.
It claimed that workers who had failed to show up for the secondment exercise or those who showed up but failed to provide crucial documents were being harassed and intimidated by the two agencies.
“Pending hearing and determination of this application, an order is hereby issued restraining the respondents from terminating, harassing, intimidating or apprehending the applicant members who attended but lacked the necessary documentation and those who may have failed to attend the secondment exercise,” Justice Hellen Wasilwa said in her ruling.
The case will be heard on May 13.
KCGWU Nairobi branch secretary Boniface Waweru said they sued because the workers were never consulted on the secondment exercise.
“Our aim is to have the secondment exercise stopped in its entirety because, as workers and crucial stakeholders in the deed of transfer of functions, we were never consulted by the service commission,” Mr Waweru said.
He, however, did not give the number of workers who failed to attend the redeployment exercise.
On April 6, NMS started issuing redeployment letters to 6,052 workers at Uhuru Park in Nairobi.
Last week, another 800 officers drawn from the City Inspectorate, Administration and Investigation departments as well as sub-County Administrators were also seconded to the NMS which is led by Director-General Mohammed Badi.
A section of the workers, however, did not show up for the exercise citing orders from the workers union and Governor Mike Sonko.
The workers union had decried confusion in the implementation of the transfer of functions, saying workers were receiving instructions from four centres of power.
Mr Sonko had accused the NMS of implementing the deed of transfer of functions in an “atrocious and repugnant” manner and urged county employees to ignore a directive by PSC on secondment.