Kenyans do not need salary increase, but do this - Raila

Mr Odinga spoke during the Labour Day celebrations.

Speaking during Labour Day celebrations at Uhuru Park in Nairobi, the former Prime Minister challenged the Jubilee administration to instead hold discussions on how to reduce the cost of housing, matatu fares and prices of basic commodities which push up the cost of living.

“I know the problems Kenyans go through; it doesn’t mean we increase their salaries. Kenyans want salary increases because of the cost of living.

“Even if your salary is increased today, they will raise rent, matatu fares, cost of flour and even school fees,” the former Prime Minister said.

Mr Odinga also called on the government to instead initiate the process of reducing the cost of basic commodities, which have been straining Kenyan’s financial requirements.

“We need to start talking about how to reduce rent, cost of food. When the prices of these things are reduced, there will be no need to increase salaries,” Mr Odinga stated.

Minimum wage

However, the government announced a five per cent increment in the minimum wage to cushion workers against inflation.

The increment was announced by Cabinet Secretary in charge of Labour and Social Protection, Ukur Yattani, who read President Uhuru Kenyatta’s speech at an event to mark this year’s Labour Day at Uhuru Park on Tuesday.

“In recognition of the good work done by our workers and cognizant of the 4.8 per cent rate of inflation this year, I hereby declare a corresponding 5 per cent increase of minimum wage,” Yattani announced on Kenyatta’s behalf.

Yattani, however, noted significant losses in manpower hours numbering to 100 million owing to numerous work boycotts last year.

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