Some disgruntled teachers have launched a new teachers’ union, the Educators Union of Zimbabwe (EUZ) in Bulawayo with its leaders accusing the existing unions of failing to execute their mandate of representing teachers.
EUZ’s leadership accuses its counterparts in other unions of using the plight of teachers to advance their political agendas.
The union’s interim secretary-general, Justin Murema said the new union was apolitical and solely formed to champion teachers’ issues. Murema said:
Educators Union of Zimbabwe was formed in Bulawayo in December 2020 and is registered with the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education as a bona fide teachers organisation, which we registered this year.
The main reason for coming up with this new kid on the block for teachers is that most teachers had observed that the current teachers’ unions had deviated from their mandate of representing teachers’ interests and were now meddling in party politics while some had become an extension of our employer and some unions leaders had left the teaching profession but continued in leadership positions.”
We at EUZ do not demand a salary increase but a restoration of our 2018 salary levels when teachers used to earn US$540 monthly which was later reduced to US$35 monthly in 2020 by the employer.
The union already has more than 2 000 members and pledges to offer the missing services from those offered by other unions by bringing all teachers’ issues under one umbrella for a fruitful discussion with the employer.
EUZ claims that 70 000 out of 130 000 teachers are not in any union and EUZ seeks to recruit more of these unrepresented teachers.
Teachers’ unions have been lobbying the government to restore their 2018 salaries. There have been conflicts among labour unions with some accusing others of working on behalf of the government to frustrate negotiating efforts while others are being accused of having a pro-regime change agenda.
This is happening at the backdrop of the reopening of schools for examination classes, with some unions urging their members not to resume work until salaries have been reviewed.
Source | NewZimbabwe