Teachers US$ salaries deadlock threatens schools opening
Circular Letter No. 25 of 17 September 2020
Subject: NJNC Records an Impasse and Throws Hope of Opening Schools into the Dustbin
1.1 This morning the NJNC held a virtual meeting to follow up on the agenda of salary review and receive feedback from the negotiators’ constituencies. The meeting ended in an impasse.
2.1 Workers rejected the same paltry offer of forty percent (40%) of the basic salary and allowances that Government had brought earlier on, which would have resulted in the lowest paid employee earning Four Thousand Eight Hundred dollars (ZWL/RTGS 4800.00), and this would have meant only USD 48.00 for the lowest paid.
2.2 Calculated as a percentage of the obtaining ZimStat Poverty Datum Line (PDL) salary, this would mean the lowest paid workers would be sixty eight (68%) percentage points below the PDL.
2.3 The response from government is negligent, lax, careless and utterly irresponsible given the state of the Zimbabwean economy and the threat it poses to the livelihoods of teachers.
2.4 This response comes on the background of selective and segregational treatment of teachers from the rest of state employees, whom we have come to learn have a better end of the stick.
2.5 Following this insensitive offer, teachers now devoutly resolve to pursue the earlier demand of USD 520 denominated salary with uncompromising attitude.
3.1 The implications to the teachers of this impasse is that teachers will fail to get back to work. In the absence of an intervention that will change the economic status of teachers, this eventually is as sure as sunrise.
3.2 The response from government is a blow below the belt and foul play in the social dialogue process.
3.3 ZIMTA absolves itself from the hullabaloo that will characterise the re-opening of schools.
3.4 By this circular, we are alerting the other party to beware of unfortunate eventualities.
Tapson Nganunu Sibanda
National Secretary General