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Trade unions put employers on notice

By Standard Reporter | Published Sun, November 27th 2016 at 00:00, Updated November 26th 2016 at 23:03 GMT +3

Trade unions are calling for strict enforcement of labour laws to ensure a thriving economy and a productive workforce.

Five COTU affiliates including Kenya Engineering Workers Union, Amalgamated Union of Kenya Metal Workers, Tailors and Textiles Workers Union, Shoe and Leather Workers Union and Kenya Petroleum Workers Union said workers were subjected to various forms of exploitation.

Officials of the unions spoke on Thursday when they joined hands in launching a campaign against precarious work, which is non-standard employment that is poorly paid, that has dominated the labour industry against provisions of labour laws of Kenya.

In a statement signed by the General Secretary of Kenya Engineering Worker’s Union Charles Natili, the unionists called for increased social dialogue in the labour market to make it more vibrant. They also called for capacity building besides provision of better terms of employment. “Apparently the employment act 2007 does not protect completely workers from being exploited by employers in terms of performing precarious jobs,” the statement said.

General Secretary of the Amalgamated Union of Kenya Metal Workers Rose Omamo asked employers to respect workers’ rights, saying the era when employers were free to do whatever they wanted was long gone.