‘We are incapacitated to go back to work’ – ZIMTA
By Staff Writer
THE Zimbabwe Teachers Association (ZIMTA) has declared a state of incapacitation amid calls for government to expedite the salaries negotiations.
In an update Friday, ZIMTA president Richard Gundane said the decision was reached after consultations with its forty-three thousand (43 000) strong members through its structures in the last seven days.
“The National Executive met at ZIMTA-Ehlekweni Vocational Institute on 3 February 2022, to receive reports and membership submissions. Pursuant to the meeting, the National Executive (NE), resolved to declare a state of incapacitation by its members,” he said.
The reports were also extended to include all public sector educators who are in solidarity with suffering colleagues.
“The salary levels earned in January 2022 is inadequate to support transport needs for commuting to various stations in the rural areas and to support daily commuting by teachers in urban areas.
“Educators have failed to pay school fees and buy uniforms for their children, let alone failure to subsist as families, a scenario that has pushed educators to moonlight. Without a meaningful salary increase educators have no way of going back to assume their duties,” he said.
The teachers group said the response from government in the last NJNC meeting did not give an aorta of hope, instead it squandered all the goodwill that educators had credited the negotiating platform.
“Teachers now postulate that the USD $75 Covid-19 allowance was a make-believe gesture meant to pull wool over their faces so that the State would appear it cared about teachers’ welfare. Teachers’ patience has been overstretched and now feel provoked, underrated, thought off and abused, a strong feeling of disdain has been generated on the negotiating structures,” said Gundane.
The teachers’ association urged authorities to conclude the salary issue now and “further desist from the tendency” of throwing teachers and indeed the rest of the civil service into cyclic industrial disharmony.
“We stand by the recommendations of the many teachers in the public schools and many civil servants tormented by the poor salary and employment benefits awarded negligently by the employer,” added Gundane.