Teachers Union of Malawi (TUM) says the verbal pledge by President Peter Mutharika to resolve teachers’ grievances cannot be taken seriously on face value and maintained its ultimatum to Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MoEST) to address their concerns until May 9 2016 or face a nationwide strike.
President Mutharika said he has delegated a “high powered” team to resolve the stand over.
But TUM leadership takes Mutharika’s verbal pledge with a pinch of a salt.
TUM secretary general Denis Kalekeni said if government fails to resolve the matter , “ teachers in public service shall hold an industrial action in form of a sit-in from Monday 9th May 2016.”
Among the outstanding grievances, TUM cites issues of promotion and salary adjustments of teachers, failure by MoEST to pay leave grants to public secondary school teachers for the 2015/16 financial year expiring on June 30 and delayed payment of salary arrears for primary school teachers.
TUM also accuses the government of threatening to withdraw promotions of some primary school teachers who were promoted on understanding that they would take up rural school positions.
“The ministry says it wants to withdraw the promotions because they had not gone to the schools where they were posted yet the government has not given them transport. Let the government provide transport,” TUM president Chauluka Muwake said.
He also claimed some secondary school teachers have not yet received leave grants.