The Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) has said it welcomes the government’s decision to investigate reports that it’s leaders were working with the United Kingdom government to undermne the administration led by President Emmerson Mnangagwa. The union reiterates that it is unthinkable for them to unseat Mnangagwa who has full control of state institutions including the security forces. PTUZ in recent weeks clashed with government after declaring that its members will not invigilate ZIMSEC examinations that started Monday, if they are not paid alloawances. Pindula News presents a statement issued by PTUZ president Takavafira Zhou:
PTUZ Welcomes Objective Investigations but Condemns False Accusations and Diversionary Tactics
1 December 2021
As PTUZ we welcome govt investigations on teachers’ unions allegedly working in cohorts with the UK to deliver a regime change. This is a rational approach that we believe can unravel the truth if objectively done. Sadly, ZBC and Herald have already found culprits before any investigations are carried out.
As PTUZ we are baffled by such a lackadaisical, warped and vacuous approach. Wouldn’t it have been more prudent to investigate and make informed enunciations rather than the ludicrous hallucination of falsely accusing legitimate union leaders of a crime they have not committed?
ZBC and Herald have not only peddled a tissue of misrepresentation, high sounding nothing but falsehoods of the worst order. How a legitimate teachers’ union can overnight assume powers to change an entrenched totalising hegemonic power with full control of security forces, remains baffling and puzzling.
We posit that this is a diversionary tactic tailor-made to weaken our focus on teachers’ welfare and the establishment of a credible system of education in Zimbabwe.
We want to reiterate that PTUZ is not and will never become an appendage of any political party or govt. It is a labour union with members cutting across the political divide.
We however have no apology for advancing the interests of teachers and defending any gains made. For this reason, we have knocked at every govt door including the office of the President, ED Mnangagwa, petitioning parliamentary portfolio committees over the parlous state of our education system, lack of investment in quality public education, living wage and payment for invigilation of examinations run by a parastatal, Zimsec, among many other things.
This is a struggle that we are prepared to fight for every time, and if need be die for, as it is the basis for the sustainable development of Zimbabwe. We have no regrets for managing the nation’s best assets, viz, pupils, but only call upon those who make decisions to engage in broad consultations and act responsibly, as opposed to educational vandalism and entrenchment of poverty and penury of teachers. Blame us now it doesn’t matter, history will absolve us.
Dr Takavafira M. Zhou, PTUZ President