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  • Strikes and Protests 2007/8 - Teachers and Lecturers

  • Zimta joins teachers strike as it enters third week
    Henry Makiwa, SW Radio Africa
    September 27, 2007

    Visit the index of articles on the teachers' strikes

    Zimbabwe's two teachers unions on Wednesday finally found common ground when the Zimbabwe Teachers Association (ZIMTA) called for its membership to join in the national strike.

    Most teachers in Zimbabwe went on a go-slow early September in protest at poor salaries, while some went on a full strike a fortnight ago, following calls by the Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ).

    According to sources, leaders of ZIMTA - largely seen as docile and compliant to the government - told its members to join the strike Thursday after discussions with government for a salary review fell through.

    The PTUZ's general secretary, Raymond Majongwe, welcomed ZIMTA's "late entry into the fray" describing the teachers crisis as "needing the support of all".

    Majongwe said: "We feel sad for the students who have to go without classes and its unfortunate to the parents as well but it is the government that is to blame.

    "The government has the express responsibility of ending this strike if it can pay teachers a reasonable salary. It is part of it's terms of governance to cater for civil servants, teachers included, but it has dismally failed so far. We however, welcome ZIMTA who have finally seen that negotiations with this government do not work, for joining the job action."

    Some teachers in Zimbabwe are earning as little as Z$2 million, an equivalent of 3 pounds sterling on the black market. A fortnight ago, teachers spurned a 100 percent salary increment from government, demanding instead a Z$15 million basic salary plus a Z$5,2 million housing allowance and Z$4 million transport recompense.

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