Originally by Newsday
TEACHERS have more or less told the government to ‘go hang’ as they will continue with their plan to strike on schools opening day despite the stern warning by the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education Prof Paul Mavhima
Mavhima a had made a statement saying the government would not allow the situation in the education sector to “deteriorate into chaos”.
But outspoken Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe secretary general Raymond Majongwe told Mavima to “stay out”
“It is not his mandate. Teachers are not employed by his ministry and he has no business poking his nose into this issue,” Majongwe said
Mavima suggested that teachers wanted to use the same modus operandi as the doctors and nurses.
“The pressure that these unions are attempting to put on government should be viewed in the correct context, that of trying to follow the same route taken by doctors and more recently nurses,” Mavima said.
He said that government will be meeting with the teachers this week and hear out their grievances.
Federation of Zimbabwe Educators Union (Fozeu) spokesperson Emmanuel Nyawo said they had not been formally invited to the meeting
“We have tried to engage government as the education sector because we feel we have issues that are specific to us and not to the rest of the civil service as represented by the Apex Council, but we have received no joy. We wrote three letters to minister (Simbarashe) Mumbengegwi (Public Service), but he did not even have the courtesy to acknowledge them.
It would be very unfortunate if government were to try and politicise these issues. These are genuine grievances by teachers,” Nyawo said,
He added that government promises since 2013 have not materialised.
“We have a resolution and I must say this is not Nyawo’s message, that as long as these issues are not addressed then our members will not report for duty. We note that government has sent us an informal invitation to engage and we are ready. We would be surprised and dismayed if government tries to equate our situation with the nurses or doctors issue. It would be really sad,” the Fozeu spokesperson said.
Majongwe had no kind words for Minister Mavima.
“He (Mavima) must know that he is occupying a public office and threats do not work. We had expected him to take a different approach to issues from the one used by his predecessor (Lazarus) Dokora who ran the education sector aground. If he wants a combative approach to issues he will get just that,” Majongwe said.