The Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ) has resolved that its members will not report for duty when schools open for the first term next week until the government pays heeds to their demands.
Government employees recently rejected a 97 percent pay rise offered by the government, a situation that might put the school calendar in jeopardy.
ARTUZ held its elective congress in Gweru this week and resolved that they will not report for duty if the government fails to resolve their grievances.
Speaking to CITE, the re-elected ARTUZ President Obert Masaraure said they want their salaries pegged to the interbank rate.
“On labour justice and the state of the education sector, Congress noted and resolved that the slave wage being earned by a civil servant in this hyperinflationary environment, teachers will not be reporting for duty until they receive US dollar interbank rate indexed salaries. The year 2020 is a year of resistance against oppression and exploitation,” said Masaraure.Obert Masaraure, ARTUZ president
He added that the association will advocate for the alignment of laws governing freedom of association and assembly to the 2013 constitution.
“ARTUZ advocates for the alignment of laws governing freedom of association and assembly to the 2013 constitution. The union will engage the joint operation command (JOC) to lobby them to stop the victimisation of teachers,” he said.
Meanwhile, in Bulawayo, learners who learn at boarding schools were seen on Saturday travelling to their respective schools.
Parents who spoke to CITE said they hope for a productive term though they understand the predicament faced by teachers.
“We hope for a productive term, with teachers present all the time but we, however, understand what they go through as their salaries are being devalued by inflation,” said a guardian Sipho Ndlovu.
Last-minute shoppers who were also seen in the city centre making their back to school shopping in readiness for the beginning of the new school term.