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John Matiang’i resigns from KNUT after 13 years

KNUT secretary-general Wilson Sossion (right) with chair, Wycliffe Omuchayi (centre), and national treasurer John Matiang'i at KNUT offices in Mfangano Street, Nairobi.  [Jenipher Wachie, Standard]

Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) National Treasurer John Matiang’i has resigned after 13 years.

Matiang’i, a brother to Interior Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i, said his resignation from the union was voluntary.

“It has been my delight to serve teachers and champion their causes. Working as a trade unionist is not the easiest of jobs, but I have walked in solidarity with teachers and my colleagues in the union in the truest sense of that phrase. I had their back as they had mine,” said Matiang’i.

Opening up about his early retirement, Matiang’i said his letter to the National Executive Council, through the Secretary-general, Senator Wilson Sossion, was accepted.

Matiang'i, who is due to complete his PhD at the University of Nairobi, said he is retiring to focus on family.

“I am taking time off in service to my family and to complete my studies at the University of Nairobi, which have stalled for some time now due to work obligations. This is not a decision to exit public service; it is a temporary, but necessary break to allow me to take stock of my journey and map out my next phase,” said Matiang’i.

While supervising the union’s branch elections in Kisii, Matiangi, accused the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) of meddling in the union’s affairs.

“Unfortunately, the employer does not want to implement what is in the scheme of service; that a teacher shall be promoted upon attaining higher qualifications,” said Matiang’i.

Matiangi said teachers had been undermined and forced to deliver under challenging work conditions.

“We are now seeing endless forms. We, as teachers, can be forced to fill forms but cannot be forced to deliver. A worker who is well motivated is one who can deliver effectively,” said Matiang'i.