The Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) has blamed the Government for the rise in coronavirus infections in schools, just two weeks after schools opened for the 2022 first term.
PTUZ president Takavafira Zhou said the spike in new COVID-19 infections in schools could have been avoided if the Government had ensured that pupils were tested prior to the reopening of schools. Said Zhou:
One of our key variables for the successful opening of schools has been our call for government prioritisation of the health and safety of teachers, pupils and ancillary staff.
That the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education ordered the conglomeration of teachers, pupils and ancillary staff without any testing has already led to a quantum leap of COVID-19 cases in schools over the past two days, with more than 132 cases reported in primary schools in Masvingo and Matabeleland.
COVID-19 pandemic is real just as the incapacitation of teachers. As PTUZ leaders, we cherish genuine feedback that comes from flag bearers of our incapacitation struggle in all the provinces.
We also continue to liaise with our colleagues in Fozeu [Federation of Zimbabwe Educators Union] and the global community in order to find the best way forward.
According to the Ministry of Health and Child Care, on Friday, 18 February 2022, 432 new cases were recorded countrywide, of which 66 are from outbreaks detected from schools, with Masvingo Province leading with 41 cases.