PUPILS at the Anglican Church-run Samaringa Primary School in Mutasa Central yesterday wrote their mid-year examinations sitting on the floor after the school’s furniture was attached and taken away by the messenger of court on Friday over a labour dispute.
BY KENNETH NYANGANI
Mutare Central legislator Trevor Saruwaka (MDC-T) yesterday described the sight at the school as pathetic and called on Primary and Secondary Education minister Lazarus Dokora to intervene urgently.
“My heart bleeds when I see this happening in an independent Zimbabwe,” he said.
“This is like a picture taken out of war-ravaged countries like South Sudan, Libya or Syria. This is totally unacceptable. I called minister Dokora and he promised to do all he could to ensure that the pupils’ right to education is not disturbed.”
Manicaland provincial education director Edward Shumba blamed school authorities for causing the chaos leading to the attachment of the property, saying they had employed and underpaid a clerk.
“The school employed a clerk in July 2009, and they were paying the clerk at a rate of $50 and in 2012 the salary increased to $250 and the member resigned in June 2013, those are the basic facts,” he said.
“It appears there was a court decision in November 2014 to the effect that they were owing this person $14 334,21. However, the school did not communicate with the district or the provincial offices.
“Rather, they passed the matter to the responsible authorities (the church), who handled it. The school got a notice of seizure and attachment from the High Court of Zimbabwe.
“However, the lawyer said it was from the Supreme Court. As a result, school property was attached on July 21 this month, this is a legal matter that will be dealt with by the responsible authority.”
Anglican Manicaland Diocese registrar Ashley Mutungura said they were dealing with the matter.