CORD has dismissed as baseless and false reports appearing in a section of the press that the solidarity account it announced yesterday to assist teachers sort certain contingencies has only accrued sh 406.
ODM Director of Communications Philip Etale told this writer there has been ‘tremendous response’ since the initiative was announced.
The M-Pesa paybill account number 672672 was registered on September 23, 2015 by opposition party ODM through its Executive Director Oduor Ongâ€™wen.
However, initially, certain media outlets and elements associated with the government reported that the account number itself was registered by Virgin Airlines, adding to the confusion. Safaricom had to come out and clear the issue, delaying payments to the account.
ODM Leader Raila Odinga pledged sh 100,000, same as Wiper Party Leader Kalonzo Musyoka.
Other anti-initiative sources claimed the account would be used by CORD for campaigns, a claim that was trashed by KNUT Secretary General Wilson Sossion who said CORD’s initiative has been agreed upon by the union to assist it incur legal costs among other contingencies.
Here is satement by Etale:
TRUTH ABOUT USHIRIKIANO ACCOUNT
Yesterday during the Uhuru Park Rally, CORD leaders launched the â€ª#â€ŽUshirikianoAccountâ€¬ through paybill number 672672. During the launch, Hons. Raila Odinga and Kalonzo Musyoka led the push by sending Ksh. 100,000 each to the account. Since the launch, there has been tremendous response from well-wishers from across the country and abroad.
However, some opponents of this great initiative have been all over social media misconstruing facts with regard to the initiative. Some have been saying that this is one way of raising funds for CORDâ€™s campaign in 2017 while others say that CORD is usurping the role of the TSC of paying teachers. This is total ignorance.
You will recall some two weeks ago, the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) announced that it had stopped the teachersâ€™ salaries. Effectively, the membersâ€™ contributions to the Teachers Unions (KNUT & KUPPET) were stopped. These two unions have been engaged in a protracted court battle with the TSC over the implementation of the 50-60% payrise for teachers. With minimal cash flow occasioned by the stoppage of membersâ€™ contributions, the unions may reach a point where they will be unable to raise money for their counsels representing them hence the need for this kind of intervention.
Secondly, after the 2014 strike, teachers decided to set up a contingency account with the aim of transforming it in to a SACCO and to which members can contribute money to help them in times of problems.
Moneys to be raised through #UshirikianoAccount Paybill 672672 will be channeled to this account by the teachers and will be shared amongst them especially at this time when their salaries have been stopped.
It should be noted that CORD has no capacity whatsoever to pay teachers salaries; neither can such initiatives raise money to do so. We are only raising money to have the teachers get something to keep them going as they pursue what is rightfully theirs.