Pain at Posta Kenya as workers go for months without salaries
The Communication Workers Union (COWU) has called for the reduction of general managers at Postal Corporation as one way of saving the parastatal from collapse.
The union also wants the corporation's board dissolved saying it has failed in its mandate even as workers lament non-payment of their salaries since November last year.
This year, the Postal Corporation of Kenya will be marking 21 years since splitting from the parent organization Kenya Posts and Telecommunication Corporation, which also saw the creation of Telkom Kenya and the Communications Authority.
However, workers at Posta, as it is known by its brand name, have very little to celebrate.
"Staff have not been paid salaries for last two months, now going into third and we are not seeing any chance that probably in next one month or 2 months there will be change," said COWU Secretary-General Benson Okwara.
Last month, the workers staged a sit in to protest the alleged non-payment of salaries and aired other issues affecting them. But the union says their concerns have fallen on deaf ears and are calling for speedy measures to rescue the parastatal from self-destruction.
The union wants senior managers reduced to a sustainable level to cut on cost of operations.
"Currently we are having 9 general managers,…9 general managers is uncalled for….in papers we have written to parliament, we demanded for only 3 general managers, one in changer operations, one finance, one HR…..the rest we don’t need," added the union Secretary General.
The board of directors at Posta have also come under fire for allegedly failing to provide oversight and direction and the union is now calling for its dissolution.
Out of the 623 post offices owned by Posta, nearly 250 cannot make enough money to sustain their operations. The union says government and ICT ministry support is key to addressing this challenge.
"The Ministry does not use Posta Corporation of Kenya (PCK) they are using PCK competitors to provide these services,…like Nyayo House here they use G4S… where do they expect PCK to get business?" posed Okwara.
The corporation which has a workforce of 2,550 workers countrywide, has also been struggling to remain afloat as advancement in technology changed dynamics of mail business in the country.