Primary and Secondary Education Minister Cain Mathema says teachers should desist from hurling insults at authorities as there is a need for unity among citizens to fight the novel coronavirus.
Mathema was speaking to NewsDay after 7 teachers’ unions on Tuesday had petitioned his Ministry to postpone the reopening of schools until the virus has been effectively contained. He said:
This is not the time for insults, but unity among all Zimbabweans to fight COVID-19. I am going to meet with the union leaders so that we iron out their grievances. But what I can say is that we value the safety of all our teachers and the 4,6 million learners.
The petition was signed by the Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ), Amalgamated Rural Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe (Artuz), Zimbabwe Teachers’ Association, Zimbabwe Democratic Teachers’ Union, Zimbabwe National Teachers’ Union, Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe and the Zimbabwe National Educators’ Union.
Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) president Takavafira Zhou said plans to reopen schools in four weeks’ time were “ill-conceived”.
Meanwhile, Amalgamated Rural Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ) president Obert Masaraure said the government should not experiment with the lives of teachers and learners.