By Harrison Kivisu
The bad blood between the Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) and Teachers Service Commission (TSC) escalated on Wednesday after the later snubbed primary schools headteachers’ conference after the union was allowed to address the gathering.
The rivalry between the two played out openly with TSC opting to walk out of the week-long Kenya Primary Schools Head Teachers Association (Kepsha) meeting in protest.
TSC is reported to have been irked by the ‘sneaking in’ of Knut Secretary-General Wilson Sossion into the conference programme.
While addressing the 7,500 teachers, Sossion demanded that procurement and distribution of textbooks in public schools be decentralized, and a stop to the ongoing implementation of the National Education Management Information System (Nemis) and delocalization policy.
Sossion said he has no problem with Kepsha despite having not been invited for the conference.
“We are here by right. We are demanding that the government come to the table. We must be consulted in matters to be with teachers,” he said on Monday.
This allegedly angered TSC chairperson, Dr Lydia Nzomo and the Chief Executive Officer Nancy Macharia, who interpreted it as incitement by the union against TSC.
They ordered the commission officials who were attending the meeting to leave immediately.
“There is no way Nzomo and Macharia could have come to address a gathering that has already been poisoned. Sossion had planted some teachers to heckle the two,” said a TSC official who sought anonymity.