Teachers reject NSSF deductions

Teachers reject NSSF deductions

Teachers reject NSSF deductions

More than one-third of teachers‘ wages are being withheld by the government as National Social Security Fund (NSSF) deductions as they make their way home.In a lawsuit brought before the High Court by the Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET), it was shockingly revealed that some teachers are barely making ends meet as a result of exorbitant deductions made by the Kenya Kwanza government.

The Public Service Superannuation Scheme (PSSS) and the National Social Service Fund (NSSF) are the two pension schemes that KUPPET has filed a lawsuit against.The union claims that teachers are required to contribute 7.5% of their salaries to PSSS. In accordance with NSSF, they are obligated to contribute 6% of their wages, with matching funds provided by the Teachers Service Commission (TSC).Additionally, according to the union’s lawsuit, which was brought by attorney Linet Maiyo, teachers must contribute 1.5% of their wages toward the housing levy.

The Akelo Misori-led union claims that forcing teachers to pay into two mandated pension plans and send more than a third of their monthly income away is unjust and in violation of the Employment Act.”The petitioner (KUPPET) further asserts that its members are coerced into joining two pension plans that are both administered by the government and share the same goal of providing members with pension benefits. The union contends in court documents submitted on Friday that there is no logical justification or explanation for why the petitioner’s members should be subjected to two government-mandated pension plans.

Attorney General, NSSF board, TSC, and National Assembly have all been sued by KUPPET. PSSS has also been identified as an interested party in the case at the same time.The government’s decision to withhold National Social Security Fund (NSSF) contributions from the salary of its members has been contested in court by a teachers’ union.According to the Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (KUPPET), it is unlawful and unfair for the government to withhold teachers’ pension funds if they are not registered with or affiliated with the NSSF.

Since they were never consulted, teachers shouldn’t be subject to the NSSF plan, claims Maiyo. She further contends that the scheme’s requirement of participation violates teachers’ freedom to select the pension plan of their choice.”Members of the Petitioner are already enrolled in a separate pension plan that offers higher returns than the plan that the Respondents are requiring them to join. “Being forced to join the scheme under the NSSF Act has violated the petitioner’s members’ right to choose to be a part of a competitive pension scheme,” claims Maiyo.

Teachers were automatically enrolled in PSSS because they were employed as public officials, according to Misori’s supporting affidavit.He claims that following the NSSF Act’s implementation, the union filed a lawsuit and successfully argued that the Act was illegal.Misori asserts that the Employment and Labour Relations Court’s (ELRC) orders were overturned by the Court of Appeal.He claims that the Office of Public Service, Gender and Affirmative Action’s Principal Secretary issued an order requiring firms to pay the social security contributions made by their staff.

The aforementioned letter from the Principal Secretary was false, misguided, and inaccurate since it claimed that the Court of Appeal had upheld the constitutionality of the NSSF Act, which could not be further from the truth. It also misread the terms of the contested Act regarding employer and employee contributions, according to Misori.

He claims that PSSS exempts its members from making NSSF contributions.These deductions, along with the other required deductions, such as those to the NSSF, he claims, “cause the Petitioner’s members’ net pay to go below the statutory limit of 1/3 as set out under section 19(3) of the Employment Act, therefore placing them at risk of disciplinary proceedings from their employer.”

While the matter is being heard and decided, KUPPET is requesting an order prohibiting NSSF from requesting contributions from its members.Additionally, the union requests that the court rule that teacher contributions to the NSSF are unlawful. At the same time, it is requesting a ruling that the government’s requirement to take more than a third of teachers’ monthly salary is a violation of their constitutional rights.

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