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Exam disruptions feared as teachers renew pay grumble, call strikes

by Staff reporter
22 Nov 2021 at 06:15hrs | Views
Disgruntlement is growing among teachers after one union declared a 12-day strike, and a second said its members would not be invigilating final year examinations for Grade 7, Form 4 and Upper Sixth.

The Amalgamated Rural Teachers' Union (ARTUZ) says its members have been boycotting work since Monday over low pay, while the Progressive Teachers' Union of Zimbabwe said its members would not be invigilating examinations for free.

"Teachers across the country embarked on industrial action in protest of the government's slave wages that have reduced us into destitutes," ARTUZ president Obert Masaraure said.

"Over 92 percent of ARTUZ membership took heed of the call to withdraw labour. Percentage attendance in schools dropped to an average of 57 percent across the country."

In a statement on Wednesday, the PTUZ demanded that teachers should be paid by the Zimbabwe Schools Examination Council (ZIMSEC) for invigilating its examinations which start this week.

"The PTUZ formally notified ZIMSEC, the ministry of primary and secondary education and the Public Service Commission that our members will not be invigilating examinations for free," the union said.

"School heads should not include our members on invigilation timetables. We will not be seconded to a parastatal without our permission."

Last week, the biggest teachers' union – ZIMTA – said it was giving the government until the end of November to review teachers' salaries or face strikes. Teachers want the lowest paid to receive US$540, or the equivalent in local currency, from the current average US$130.

All the unions also want the government to pay their 2021 annual bonuses with their November salaries on Friday.

The government said the bonuses will be paid in foreign currency. Police officers who got paid earlier this week said their salaries did not contain bonuses, and they have been advised these would be deposited separately at the end of November.

Source - newshawks