TSC Offices Drama: Teachers Day Long Protests Demanding For Overdue Transfers
Drama ensued at the Tharaka Nithi County TSC offices in the administrative town of Chuka when the more than 50 primary school teachers demanding transfers thronged the offices leading to their closure! It is reported that the desperate teachers have been camping up too late in the night at the offices since the tenth(10) May this year in a bid to make their plea heard.
The bulk of these teachers are from Tharaka North, Tharaka South and Chiakariga Sub-Counties. However, they are stationed in Embu, Meru and the far-flung Kitui Counties thus their plea to their employer(TSC) to transfer them to their home Sub -counties. This is in line with the new guidelines of having teachers working in schools in their home counties: The delocalisation policy initiated by the Kenya Kwanza government. It is reported that the said teachers had followed the due procedure of requesting for transfer by making official applications to the Tharaka Nithi County TSC office. The said office informed the teachers that they could only be transferred to Igambang’ombe, Maara and Chuka Sub-counties based on available vacancies.
This communication did not however sit well with the desperate teachers. They have vowed to remain at the county TSC office until a time when their request will be honoured in line with the new delocalisation policy.
Corruption and Nepotism
A teacher who did not want his identity revealed because of the sensitive nature of the issue, has disclosed that there are enough vacancies for teachers to be transferred to Tharaka North, Tharaka South and Chiakariga sub-counties but the relevant TSC bosses are preserving these positions for their friends to have them benefit from the hardship allowances! He retaliated that they have reliable information that teachers from other counties have used corruption to have them transferred to the hardship region automatically edging out those who come from these areas.
One Mrs Jane Mwangi, a teacher from Tharaka South, currently stationed at a school in Meru county opined that most of the young teachers sought transfers to schools near their homes in a bid to be with their immediate families. She cited broken dysfunctional families as a phenomenon that had become rampant following teachers working in far places from their families. The issue had been aggravated by the little pay and the shrinking economy that hindered frequent travels to reunite with families! She continued to point out that it would only be fair if teachers seeking transfers from hardship areas be moved to similar hardship areas in their home regions to caution them from defaulting on loan payments having already committed their salaries to big loans!
Another teacher Mr Mutinda Muriungi, who has been teaching in Tigania East in Meru County observed that the TSC County director had declined to address them. He communicated their unshakeable resolve to camp at the offices until their plea is honoured.
Teachers Union ( KNUT)
The Kenya National Union Teachers (KNUT) Tharaka Nithi County chapter executive secretary Njeru Mutani and Tharaka Constituency executive secretary Ndia Gwatia vehemently supported the teachers on Tuesday morning and confirmed that their requests must be honoured.
The KNUT’s national trustee, Mr Mutani, observed that the teachers have for a long time suffered operating away from their homes and that it would be fair that they are moved to their homes to mind their families. He further criticised the county TSC office for deploying teachers from other areas in Tharaka South, Tharaka North and Chiakariga sub-counties, short-changing those who hail from these regions.
Gleam Of Hope?
Mr Gwatia on the other hand opined that they had already spoken to the county TSC director Rosemary Sokotian, who was away from the office then and that she had given her commitment to sorting out the issue soonest.
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