Teachers’ unions have vowed to fights for their rights as the government Wednesday threatened to expel all striking teachers and school heads who fail to report for duty by Tuesday next week.
Authorities said they will replace the striking teachers with college graduates and unemployed trained educators.
Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) secretary-general Raymond Majongwe said:
We warned the government that it was going to be an uphill task to call teachers to schools without paying them first. Teachers are incapacitated and we need a comprehensive roadmap to be followed in addressing our issues.
The PTUZ also petitioned Education International, a global federation of teachers’ trade unions which is headquartered in Brussels, Belgium, where President Emmerson Mnangagwa is attending the European Union/African Union summit, to intervene to resolve their impasse with the government. The PTUZ letter dated February 15, read:
We are requesting Education International to intervene on our behalf and engage the government of Zimbabwe to avert a labour crisis. It is important to note that the government can afford to act in blatant disregard of normal labour relations with workers because it has consistently failed to adhere to International Labour Organisation Conventions 151 and 154 which obliges it to adhere to good labour relations.
Federation of Zimbabwe Educators Union chairperson Obert Masaraure said they have already taken steps to institute legal proceedings against the government.
Legal expert Tawanda Mapuranga said the government’s decision had no legal backing adding that it was only motivated by political interests.
Parents that spoke to NewsDay yesterday said the government ran the risk of employing inexperienced teachers, compromising education standards.
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