An indigenous farmer has reportedly demanded rentals in foreign currency from teachers at Eagle Tanning Primary and Secondary schools in rural Marondera, something that the teachers cannot afford.
Teachers currently earn between $14 000 and $19 000 in local currency but the farmer, identified as Godfrey Gonese, is demanding US$60 per month for a six-roomed house backdated to January.
Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe Mashonaland East provincial coordinator Tapiwa Chengeta confirmed the development to NewsDay on Tuesday.
Chengeta said all schools belonged to the government, hence the teachers should not pay the rentals. He is quoted as saying:
Last week, we visited the school after hearing that Lowveld Leather Products, whose farm accommodates the school, is now demanding rentals from teachers.
It is unfortunate that some people can come from nowhere and claim that government property is theirs.
Schools are owned by the State, it is the government that provides accommodation to these teachers.
We do not tolerate such demands and we will fight until the teachers’ concerns are dealt with.
Eagle Tanning primary and secondary schools were established in 1979 by Belmont Leather to cater for employees’ children as well as those from nearby communities.
The schools were handed over to the government in 1981 through the Marondera Rural District Council.
The primary school has an enrolment of 652 pupils and 19 teachers, while a total of 546 students are enrolled at the secondary school.