Some 50,000 retired teachers who are seeking Sh42.3 billion in pension want the court to set a time limit for the government to settle all their dues.
While making an application yesterday at the high court sitting in Nakuru, lawyer Dominic Kimatta, who represents the retirees, asked the judge to compel the Director of Pension and the teacher service commission to commit themselves on the exact time when they will settle the pension in lump-sum.
The retirees argued that though the court made a judgment in 2008 that they be paid their dues, they were yet to get them. The pensioners’ lawyer, Mr Kimatta expressed fear that some of his clients might die before they access the money.
“Most of them are really aged, while others are on their way to meet their Maker. Others are already dead,” Kimatta told Justice Janet Mulwa in the application.
The teachers through the application claimed the Government owed them accumulated salary and pension arrears to the tune of Sh42 billion.
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However, the court noted that the amount was not certified in a ruling delivered in October 17, 2019. The court had ruled that the retired teachers were not entitled to any salary areas. TSC and the Director of pensions disputed the Sh42 billion claim and said the amount owed to the retirees was Sh16.7 billion only.
Lawyer Kimatta, in the application on behalf of the retired teachers, said the court should nevertheless give directions whether the 16.7 billion is payable and if so the amount be paid within 60 days in full.
He further argued that the October 2019 ruling contradicts the 1997 agreement and pensions Act, as there can be no pension payable without salary component, which was a basis of the entire suit and evidence given by parties in a case filed in 2006.
“The ruling of October 13, 2019, literally rendered the entire judgment of the previous court useless and the applicants cannot enforce any part of the judgment in view of Pensions Act,” stated Kimatta in the application.
The ruling he also noted did not give both the TSC and the Director of Pensions time limit within which to comply with the judgment, leaving the decree holders with no hope to what they have been litigating in court for the last 16 years.
“An order should be issued to TSC boss Nancy Macharia to immediately complete, file and serve the retirees lawyer with computation of the last salary of all the retirees within 30 days in default the CEO be committed to Civil jail,” reads the application in part.