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COTU boss Francis Atwoli now trashes National Dialogue commitee

By Winnie Onyando September 24th, 2023 2 min read

The Central Organization of Trade Unions (COTU-K) has expressed skepticism regarding the National Dialogue Committee’s ability to propose meaningful solutions to combat the growing challenges associated with the rising cost of living in Kenya.

In a statement to the press signed by COTU boss Francis Atwoli, the union contends the primary responsibility for addressing this pressing issue falls upon the President William Ruto and his advisory team.

COTU emphasized the surge in the cost of living is a multifaceted issue with international dimensions, making it difficult for the National Negotiating Committee to formulate practical recommendations.

“COTU believes the National Dialogue Committee might not have the power to make any meaningful recommendations on the issues around the cost of living considering this is the role and day-to-day duty of the President of Kenya and the team of advisors around him,” the statement reads.

The union believes in ensuring political stability in the country and fostering an accountable government is essential.

This, they argue, would provide the government of Kenya with the necessary environment to initiate and implement measures aimed at alleviating the cost of living for its citizens.

“While certain factors, such as global economic dynamics and international commodity prices, are beyond the government’s direct control, there are areas where government intervention can alleviate the impact on its citizens,” the union affirmed.

Kenyans have been grappling with the mounting cost of living, exacerbated by the government’s withdrawal of subsidies and increase in taxes on fuel, electricity and other households.

Additionally, recent hikes in fuel prices have further exacerbated the challenges, effectively doubling the cost of living for many citizens.

The National Dialogue Committee, co-chaired by National Assembly Majority leader Kimani Ichungwah and Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka, was formed following closed door meetings between President William Ruto and Mr Odinga.

The talks came after a spate of protests called upon by Mr Odinga, aimed at among other, putting pressure on the Ruto administration to lower the high cost of living.

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