President Uhuru Kenyatta Announces 18% Increment for Kenyan Workers
The 1st of May in the Kenyan calendar marks Labour Day. A day that has been set aside to celebrate workers not just in Kenya but in different parts of the world though the dates vary in different countries. In Kenya the Central Organization of Trade Unions (COTU) has been mandated to champion the rights of Kenyan workers, it was founded in 1965.
President Uhuru and his deputy William Ruto joined Kenyans at Uhuru Park, Nairobi County to mark this year’s Labor Day. Also present at the event was COTU Secretary General Francis Atwoli, Nairobi County Governor Dr. Evans Kidero, and Nairobi Senator Mike Mbuvi alias Sonko.This year’s theme was “Workers, women, children and other vulnerable Kenyans appeal for a peaceful and democratic elections.
As the country slowly approaches the 2017 general election the theme of the day was in line with the election mood. President Uhuru Kenyatta also did use this time to appeal to voters by announcing the increase of minimum wage by 18%. This came at a time when the cost of living has rapidly increased making life unbearable for the local mwananchi. The increase of the minimum wage means that the lowest Kenyan worker in an urban center will be earning Ksh 16,039 on average up from Ksh 13,593 which was adjusted two years ago. The president indicated that the decision came about after consultations with various stake holders. Employers through the Federation of Kenya Employers have reacted towards this increment stating that it is higher than they had anticipated, adding that the increase would affect the cost of doing businesses which is already affected by the high cost of raw materials such as electricity.
The president did state that the Cabinet Secretary of Industrialization Adan Mohammed is set to have a meeting with stakeholders to mitigate the adverse effects expected from this move.