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Teachers hits back at Zanu PF

Local News
Obert Masaraure

TEACHERS unions have hit back at the ruling Zanu PF’s accusations that they were being funded by “hostile” embassies to destabilise the country’s education system.

The unions said Zanu PF was trying to find a scapegoat for running down the education sector.

Teachers have been at loggerheads with the Zanu PF-led government over poor working conditions, and have been demanding the pre-October 2018 salary of US$540.

In its central committee report, the ruling party said teachers were being given pieces of silver by “hostile” embassies to continue with strikes.

 Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (Artuz) president Obert Masaraure said the ruling party was just looking for a scapegoat for its failure in governing the country.

“Zanu PF has no solutions to the education crisis and it is  desperately trying to scapegoat unions for its failures. At Artuz, we are seized with coming up with solutions to the education crisis. We recently published an alternative financing model for public education,” Masaraure said.

“We hope the ruling party will engage with the document and we won’t be dragged into Zanu PF’s shadowboxing. The country is desperate for leadership and the party should stop complaining about foreigners and start leading.”

Educators Union of Zimbabwe president Tafadzwa Munodawafa said they were focused on the welfare of their members, and not politics.

“We do not know who misinforms Zanu PF as a party and we refuse to be drawn into politics. We are not worried about who the ruling party of this country is. What we do, as unions, is to represent the issues that affect our members,” Munodawafa said. “We are a professional body whose members simply want the employer to pay us a living wage and to stop inflicting labour rights abuses thereby setting the correct example to all employers in the industry in general.

 “My advice is that those responsible for information dissemination to all organisations, departments or individuals on issues that concern educators have the responsibility of doing the proper thing as education is a sensitive nerve of any country. It should be treated with utmost sincerity as we risk killing this profession for future generations. The children we are teaching right now don't desire to become teachers based of how the profession is being treated.”

Addressing 5 000 teachers at the launch of the Teachers for Economic Development (ED) in Harare last month, Harare provincial secretary Tafadzwa Muguti said teachers stood to benefit if they support Mnangagwa and the ruling party.

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