Zimsec ‘O’ Level Examiners Threaten To Strike Over Unpaid Allowances

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By Leopold Munhende, Chief Reporter

ZIMBABWE Schools Examination Council (ZIMSEC) ordinary level results could be thrown into jeopardy after examiners marking last year’s examinations threatened to strike over outstanding allowances.

Some of the examiners told they are not happy with the US$0,50 per script they are being paid and are considering going on strike.

One examiner said: “We hope Zimsec can, at least, raise the amount currently being paid to a dollar per script from the current US$0.50 and then pay us in US dollars not at the prevailing interbank rate as has been the case.”

“Some of our colleagues have been talking of striking and it has been considered but you should know that at the end of the day, it is not examiners nor government or Zimsec that loses out. It is the candidate who does. The issue is as serious as our salaries because this is the only legal way we can add on to the little we get every month.”

Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ) secretary general Robson Chere confirmed the complaints from some of their members marking examinations.

“Our members have made it clear that it would have been better if they were paid in hard currency not at the interbank exchange rate to augment the little they are already getting from government,” said Chere.

“We have received a number of complaints on this and we are hoping their calls for an increase are heard before they too go on strike as we do not want that to be the result at the end of the day.”

Chere said some of the examiners were complaining that some of the allowances were paid way after the agreed dates, a situation that has further worsened the crisis.

Zimsec spokesperson Nicholette Dlamini however played down the crisis, telling everything was in order.

“We have not yet received such reports; if there are examiners that are disgruntled they should raise them with relevant authorities so that we are able to deal with their grievances,” said Dlamini.

“If they are disgruntled we do not know the manner in which they are disgruntled as all our marking venues have recorded that they have enough examiners to go ahead with marking.”

Grade 7 examiners also queried Zimsec operations after the board delayed to pay them dues it owed them after marking the 2021 examinations.