By Githinji Mwangi.
Several members of KNUT’s top decision-making organ, NEC, have vowed to hold a meeting on Thursday, August 29, to send the union’s secretary-general, Wilson Sossion, packing.
The National Executive Council (NEC) members of the Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) say they will proceed with the Thursday meeting, which Mr Sossion postponed in a letter dated August 26.
The NEC members say with or without Mr Sossion’s presence, the now-disputed convention will go on.
The NEC members’ planned meeting comes on the back of a court order obtained by KNUT, through Mr Sossion, who claims that the executive council members planning to meet “have been paid for their presence”.
According to Mr Sossion, the Thursday meeting “has been well-funded and orchestrated by powerful individuals who want the union to collapse”.
The nominated MP further says “it would be nonsensical to have him ejected from office” at a time union officials and staff are fighting to have their 2-months’ salary arrears paid.
But, a section of the NEC members want to hear none of it.
“We shall meet at KNUT House in Nairobi tomorrow (August 29). Our key agenda is to remove Sossion from the post he is currently holding at KNUT,” said Kirinyaga County Executive Secretary, Javan Wachira.
The Kirinyaga KNUT rep says 30 out of the 39 NEC members have already endorsed the proposal to send home the firebrand trade unionist.
“We have the numbers to make Sossion leave office. Thirty of us have already ratified our agenda to force Sossion out of office. Only nine members are supporting him,” said Mr Wachira.
“The union should be saved from imminent collapse. We are urging Sossion to meet us tomorrow. If he fails to do that, we will continue with the meeting and, consequently, eject him from office,” said Mr Wachira.
“Sossion can do us a great favour by resigning today so that his resignation allows us to elect a new Sec-Gen. We cannot allow him to continue representing our interests,” said Mr Wachira, adding that the KNUT Constitution gives the NEC members powers to kick out any union official who breaches their laws.
Mr Wachira’s sentiments were echoed by other Central Kenya NEC members drawn from Murang’a, Nyandarua, Kiambu and Nyeri.
In regard to the deregistration of any KNUT member, including union officials, the body’s Constitution says: “It shall be lawful for the National Executive Council to discipline any member of the Union in any way it may deem necessary whether by censure, fine, suspension, expulsion; and any member expelled forfeits all rights.”