Lupane State University (LSU) was on Monday forced to rope in security guards to invigilate examinations after lecturers went on strike and abandoned their invigilation duties.
The examinations were being written at the ZITF examination centre in Bulawayo.
Lecturers who spoke to CITE said they downed tools to send a strong message to the university to ensure that it addresses their grievances.
A student who spoke to the publication said security officers were responsible for the distribution of exam papers and answer booklets.
He added that the guards stayed in the hall for the duration of their three-hour-long papers, which is not the norm when all is well.
In an interview with CITE, LSU registrar Jairos Makunde confirmed that the university had asked non-academic staff members to preside over exams after failing to secure invigilators.
He said lecturers did not turn up for invigilation duty due to outstanding dissertation supervision contracts and payments.
Makunde claimed the guards were in the exam hall to “provide security for the candidates”. He said:
We have indeed had some challenges with academics at our institution which has affected the exam session currently ongoing, but not that exams were invigilated by security guards. The security guards present only provided security at the venue.
We have since had to use some of our senior non-teaching staff members to invigilate the examinations. It is actually only one department that had not written exams as the other faculties have done their exams.
These are 2021 exams and the only department affected is the department of development studies, and it’s for this week only.