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Grade 7 exams in limbo as teachers urge strike

HORIZONTAL

Zimstar News

The 2021 Grade 7 final examinations due to commence this Monday hang in the balance as teachers’ groups have urged members to stay away from invigilating the public process without any pay for their services.

Zimbabwe’s restless teaching professionals have been locked in endless wage squabbles with government which has refused to give in to demands to reinstate wages to the pre-October 2018 salaries which were pegged at an average of US$540.

A stand-off over bonus payment and most recently, invigilation fees, has added to the squabbles with teachers declaring they will not volunteer unpaid services to the Zimbabwe Schools Examination Council (ZIMSEC).

Teachers argue ZIMSEC is a parastatal divorced from their employer which cannot be allowed to hire their services for free.

HORIZONTAL

In a statement weekend, Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) president Takavafira Zhou was adamant teachers should not be used for free.

“Unless there would be a new position navigated on Monday, our current position communicated to Zimsec and PSC, and copied to our line Ministry is No contract/no payment, No Invigilation Teachers must therefore walk their talk in order to communicate a bold message to Zimsec that has decided to be dishonest with the truth and take teachers for granted.

He added, “It’s either we get US$540, or else we will scale up our incapacitation struggle. Our action over payment for invigilation of public examinations must be a dress rehearsal for the restoration of the purchasing power parity of teachers’ salaries.

“No teacher must afford to stand on the touchline to watch a game we should all be playing. All teachers must be part of the solution and not part of the problem.

HORIZONTAL

“Let’s walk our talk and defend the teaching profession.”

Responding to threats of examination boycott by teachers’ groups, Primary and Secondary Education ministry spokesperson Taungana Ndoro has said government will use “anyone” to invigilate the examinations.

CHECK FULL STATEMENT BELOW:

Salary, Bonus, Invigilation etc: Teachers Engage a High Gear

27 November 2021

Bonus has never been the thrust of our struggle but it is now long overdue. Lies have short legs, and what teachers expect before the end of November is to get hard US$ for bonus. There will be no excuse whatsoever, and the sooner the money is deposited in every teacher’s Nostro account, the better. For the avoidance of doubt, Ptuz or its SG, Raymond Majongwe, has not discussed about disbursement of bonus with any gvt official. That we see his name associated with a purported meeting that exist in the figment of imagination of the writer baffles logic. Its known that it is only the colleagues in Apex who would purport to discuss an issue that has long been unilaterally determined. However, there is a meeting between the United Front of Teacher Unions and the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education on Monday, where the bonus issue may feature as a side show of many pertinent issues such as sectoral allowances and invigilation of Public Examinations.

Unless there would be a new position navigated on Monday, our current position communicated to Zimsec and PSC, and copied to our line Ministry is No contract/no payment, No Invigilation Teachers must therefore walk their talk in order to communicate a bold message to Zimsec that has decided to be dishonest with the truth and take teachers for granted.

The battle for the restoration of the purchasing power parity of teachers’ salaries is our key pre-occupation that must unite teachers across the teacher union divide. Gvt has accepted that the RTGs is an affront and useless denomination, and the time is now to ensure that henceforth, teachers would  be paid US$ dominated salaries. Teachers do not need an increment but restoration of their pre-October 2018 salaries pegged at an average of US$540 as a matter of urgency. It’s either we get US$540, or else we will scale up our incapacitation struggle. Our action over payment for invigilation of public examinations must be a dress rehearsal for the restoration of the purchasing power parity of teachers’ salaries. No teacher must afford to stand on the touchline to watch a game we should all be playing. All teachers must be part of the solution and not part of the problem. Let’s walk our talk and defend the teaching profession.

Venceremos

Dr Takavafira M. Zhou, Ptuz President

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