Kenya’s embassy in Zambia ordered to increase salaries for casual workers, provide medical cover

Foreign Affairs Ministry in Nairobi. [Photo Courtesy]

A report tabled before the National Assembly’s Foreign Affairs Committee indicates Kenya’s embassy in Lusaka, Zambia pays its 15 casual workers’ salaries below the country’s minimum wage.

The workers, of Zambian origin, get a monthly salary of 500 Kwacha (Sh3,169), an amount that is not commensurate to the difficult economic times not only in Zambia but the entire African continent.

In September 2018, Zambia radically changed its minimum wage raising it to K999.30 from K522.4 for the lowest-paid domestic worker.

The Committee chaired by Katoo Ole Metito (Kajiado South) added that the embassy does not provide the casual workers with medical insurance cover.

“They were working for long hours without any commensurate compensation. The mission was only paying them K500 (Sh3, 169.02) irrespective of the hours worked beyond the normal working hours,” Mr Metito says in the report as reported by Business Daily.

“Terms and conditions for local staff had not been reviewed for a long time despite substantial number of staff having worked for the mission for over ten years,” he added.

National Assembly has since directed Kenya’s Foreign Affairs Ministry and its diplomatic mission to Zambia headed by Ruthie Chepkoech Rono to immediately increase pay for the workers to match the countries minimum wage.

Parliament also ordered that the mission provide medical cover for all the 15 casual workers.