The Kenya University Staff Union (KUSU) and Universities Academic Staff Union (UASU) JOOUST chapters embarked on a two-day capacity building training together with the University Management Board (UMB). The purpose of the training was to acquaint the newly elected officials on the Labor Relations, Employment Act, the role of trade unions, communication aspects in labor relations, complaints management and an overall insight on ethics of representation.
The Deputy Vice Chancellor Planning, Administration and Finance Prof. Francis Ang’awa welcomed the guests noting the different entities present, adding that the convergence was to enhance harmonious co-existence as well as sharpening of negotiation skills.
While giving his opening remarks, the Vice Chancellor Prof. Stephen Agong’, congratulated the delegates on their appointment to the respective Unions, emphasizing on the importance of training in achieving harmonious leadership and election. Prof. Agong’ further urged them to take advantage of this opportunity to advance the vision of making JOOUST a leading Institution in Kenya and globally. He also thanked them for the positive engagement the Unions have had since assuming office.
The interactions ushered candid and open discussions that saw the University Management and Union officials agree on the ethical and legal parameters involved. Predominantly noted was the need for members of staff to be sensitized on their rights as well as understand the set boundaries of engagement.
The sessions of the training were conducted by experienced facilitators from The Central Organization of Trade Unions (COTU) and the Office of the Ombudsman, Commission on Administrative Justice( CAJ) who encouraged the Union official to have a solid grasp of the labor relations guidelines, emphasizing that the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) was their constitution and tool of trade; the team also highlighted the current trends in conflict resolution by Institutions and organizations and the need for alternative dispute resolution mechanisms.