Students at the Katutura Youth Enterprise Centre (Kayec) face further chaos in the new year as seventeen instructors at the centre are still embroiled in the protracted strike that started in June last year.
The instructors at the training institution are striking over alleged salary discrepancies and a lack of teaching materials.
They are demanding a 10 percent salary increment across the board plus fringe benefits. But Kayec has offered a 5.1 percent increase.
The striking instructors’ spokesperson Donald Kuhanga yesterday confirmed to New Era that they are waiting for the arbitrator’s ruling that was re-scheduled for January 19 on whether the strike is legal or not.
Higher Education, Training and Innovation Deputy Minister Dr Becky Ndjoze-Ojo last year insisted that she was powerless to take any action to resolve the strike at the institution.
While responding to questions by the opposition in parliament late last year, Ndjoze-Ojo said: “I have to reiterate that the Kayec trustee’s juristic entity is governed by a board of trustees and by virtue of that as a ministry we do not have a mandate to interfere with the issues affecting Kayec.”
She said as the ministry responsible for technical vocation and education training in the country they are indeed very much concerned about the ongoing strike, as it severely affects the skills development of Namibian youths.
New Era previously reported that a Kayec director earns N$72 139 a month. His deputy director nets N$34 859 per month and the human resources manager gets N$33 699 a month, while a monitoring and evaluation officer grosses N$22 632 a month and a communication officer earns N$21 674 a month.
The instructors and trainers feel they do much work only to take home N$6 322, little more than the cleaners who earn N$5 528 per month.
Kayec human resources manager Johan Visagie yesterday insisted that the instructors’ strike is illegal, saying that he had a letter as proof that the union representing the instructors had pulled out of the strike.
However, he said that their hands are tied as they are waiting for the decision of the arbitrator.