By Leopold Munhende
THE Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ) has accused the government of using threats in trying to force teachers back at work.
Speaking at this year’s World Teachers Day commemorations in Mkoba, Gweru, the ARTUZ secretary-general, Robson Chere accused the government of using threats against teachers, but said they would not accept “slave wages” offered.
“We meet today when educators are being threatened every day. We meet today as the government is using undue influence and duress to force educators to work for slave wages and dog tax,” he said.
“We did not become teachers because we had run out of options. We were called to be teachers; we have no illusion whatsoever about our worth.
“We do not owe our employer anything. It is not a privilege that we are employed by the state, it is our sacred right. We do not want anything from those politicians in government but a living and just wage and we will get it!
“We will not allow greed and corrupt crooks masquerading as politicians and national leaders to bastardise our profession,” said Chere.
He added: “We will leave no stone unturned and no turn unstoned as we seek financial justice from our employer. We insist today as we have always insisted that we will not be complicit in destroying and compromising the quality of education in this country.
“We do not believe that an incapacitated teacher should be anywhere near a learner hence will stay at home until this uncaring and parasitic government does the correct thing.
“We refuse to be culpable in pretending to teach when in actual fact academic genocide will be taking place in our schools.”