A handful of teachers purporting to front the interests of little known unions had a failed flash demonstration in Harare yesterday in a desperate bid to disturb civil servants’ salary negotiations under the National Joint Negotiating Committee.
The demo came as stakeholders gathered for a fresh round of salary negotiations, with the civil service staff associations saying they were optimistic after Government surprised them with US dollar bonuses as well as committing to pay Covid-19 risk allowances in foreign currency.
The protest was staged as SADC held its summit in Malawi, possibly to raise the attention of regional leaders.
The bone of contention of the teachers’ representatives could not be understood as the position of the Government has not yet been committed.
“We have our position, but obviously cannot disclose it before we meet with the employees,” said Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Minister, Professor Paul Mavima.
Unions like Progressive Teachers Unions and the Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe are usually the culprits.
The Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education has called for rationality and harmony in negotiations.
President Mnangagwa recently expressed concern over the British Government’s unwarranted and blatant interference in Zimbabwe’s domestic affairs through an unholy alliance with some teachers unions, saying an investigation will be launched soon to establish the extent the British had gone in wilfully trying to interfere in Zimbabwe’s domestic affairs.
Last month, the British House of Lords spent time brazenly discussing the country’s internal affairs with a junior officer inadvertently exposing the erstwhile colonisers’ machinations to influence internal politics through engaging teachers unions.
The illicit funding of teachers’ unions from countries like the United Kingdom and the United States has created a financial gulf between leaders and the people they purportedly represent.