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Zimbabwe teachers get paltry US$20 wage hike

by Staff reporter
20 Mar 2024 at 14:24hrs | Views
Teachers unions have declared a three-day strike starting this Wednesday in a bid to press for better wages after government recently offered a paltry US$20 increase on monthly salaries for civil servants.

Coalescing under the Federation of Zimbabwe Educators Union (FOZEU), four prominent teachers' groups said the job action shall begin this Wednesday up to Friday.

They further declared an "indefinite national strike when schools open for the next term" if government failed to meet their demands for US$1,260 minimum wage per teacher.

Teachers have been the most vocal of government's giant workforce.

"The federation hereby declares that; no teacher should report for duty from Wednesday 20 March 2024 to Friday 22 March 2024," FOZEU said in correspondence by union secretary general Obert Masaraure which was directed to the chairperson of the Public Service Commission.

"The mass action to be escalated as second term opens until employer pays a living wage."

The letter was copied to the permanent secretary, Primary and Secondary Education Ministry as well as finance and labour ministers.

The teachers' coalition says the decision to down tools was reached collectively by member groups after almost the entire majority of 56,700 teachers had been consulted over the drastic measures.

Member groups comprise the Education Union of Zimbabwe (EUZ), Zimbabwe Visually Impaired Teachers Union, Progressive Educators Union, and Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ).

The proposed strike action could however fail to find impetus as it does not have the blessings of the Zimbabwe Teachers Association (ZIMTA), the largest representative group by membership.

ZIMTA has often been mocked by rival unions as a government appendage for its inclination towards a more diplomatic wage engagement approach with government, far removed from the militant style pursued by others.

Teachers are up in arms with their employer for inadequate wages which have ironically denied them the means to educate their own children.

Government insists it has no resources to meet the relentless wage demands.

However, civil servants feel robbed after government has displayed untamed extravagance in pampering cabinet ministers, top level staff, court judges and security commanders with huge allowances, expensive cars and holidays to some of the world's dream destinations among a glut of fat perks.

Source - zimlive