United we Bargain Divided we Beg; Atwoli seeks to unite Aviation Workers.
The Central Organization of Trade Unions (COTU-K) has formed a 14 member team to mediate and unite the currently fragmented unions within the aviation sector. The 14 member team is an initiative of Bro. Atwoli after he received numerous complaints from workers in the aviation industry. As a result Bro. Atwoli has appointed Rev. Joel K. Chebii, OGW to chair the mediation team that seeks to unify the warring factions. Rev Chebii is the 1st Vice Chairman General of COTU-(K) and General Secretary of the Tailors & Textiles Workers Union (TTWU) an affiliate of COTU-K.
The Aviation Industry has been mired by sustained waves of industrial strife in recent years. This has been compounded with the mismanagement of the Nation Carrier KQ that has led to loss of jobs by many workers in the sector. The problem has further been complicated by a divided leadership from the workers side, currently the aviation sector as a whole has two registered Unions and a third one is in the offing. Constant infighting among the already fragmented unions has led to more suffering of the workers as their voice is no formidable voice to represent their grievances. As a result the management of KG in particular has taken advantage of the divided house by refusing to address the needs of their workers. No CBA has been negotiated and implemented in over four years!
Central Organisation of Trade Unions (Cotu) Secretary-General Francis Atwoli has criticised Kenya Airways’ chief executive Sebastian Mikosz over the sacking of striking engineers.
“The CEO has neither consulted nor engaged the two unions in the sector while making the decision to illegally fire the airline employees,” he said.
Mr Atwoli said cases of workers victimisation have been reported especially the technicians and engineers who belong to unions and those who are participating in the strike.
“This victimisation and threats should stop immediately. The workers are exercising their right to strike as enshrined in the Constitution Article 41(d),” he said.
He said announced that COTU-K will hire a competent lawyer to sue the management of KQ over the unlawful sacking.