HomeNewsRural teachers accuse CSC of intimidating members

Rural teachers accuse CSC of intimidating members


A UNION representing rural teachers has accused the Civil Service Commission (CSC) of allegedly intimidating its members from participating in a strike over late payment of the 2016 bonus.


The government has not announced payment dates of last year’s bonuses, infuriating civil servants, with the Amalgamated Rural Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ) going a step further to announce a nationwide strike beginning on February 20.

ARTUZ president, Obert Masaraure said the government had not responded to its threat to embark on industrial action, adding teachers will down tools despite open harassment from authorities.

“The strike is still on. We are on the ground mobilising. On February 20, we will withdraw our labour. The government has remained mum, but has deployed PSC (now known as CSC) officials to threaten teachers countrywide,” he said.

“In Masvingo, the PSC officials demanded names of teachers’ affiliated to ARTUZ and threatened them with job losses if they heed our call for a strike. We are documenting all the incidences of labour rights violations being committed by our employer and we will soon report the cases to the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC).”

The government has offered housing stands as the 2016 bonus instead of cash, citing financial challenges, but the proposal was rejected by the Apex Council, a body representing civil servants.

Cecilia Alexander, the Apex Council boss yesterday urged civil servants to give dialogue a chance before planning on any job action.

“ARTUZ is not part of the Apex Council, and unfortunately, we do not share the same position (going on strike). As far as I am concerned, the discussions are still in progress. The bonus is now overdue, but I still believe we need to give dialogue a chance,” she said.

The government last year struggled to pay civil servants their 2015 bonus and only managed to do so by staggering payments, following threats of a strike action.

Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa had tried to scrap the bonus, only to be overruled by President Robert Mugabe.

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