Malawi learners on street tear-gassed by police: Protesting against govt on nationwide teachers’ strike

Malawi Police have fired tear gas at  hundreds of learners from some public primary schools in Blantyre on Monday took to the streets, asking authorities to address their teachers’ grievances so that they can resume learning.

Learners on the streets

Learners barricaded roads

Police fired tear gas and charged at the Learners demonstrating

The learners blocked the M1 at near Mbayani market causing traffic jam along the road. Some even went further by pelting stones at road users, mostly vehicles.

They were expressing their anger of teachers’ strike which started last week.

Clad in various school uniforms, the learners from HHI, Blantyre Girls, Ndirande-Kachere, Nyambadwe and Namiwawa primary schools put business to a standstill as they chanted in unison: “Tikhonza bwanji! Sitikuphunzira!! [How are we going to pass examinations when we are not learning! ].

The learners, aged between eight and 14, sang songs demeaning the Democratic Progressive Party  administration while demanding that they immediately go back to school where teachers had abandoned chalk unless government pays everyone their leave grants.

Police fired teargas at the learners, saying  the protests were unlawful because no prior permission had been granted.

There were no reports of serious injuries.

Opposition members in Parliament (MPs) took government to task over the issue, saying delaying the process of payment will affect most learners, some of whom are set to write their Malawi School Certificate of Education (MSCE) examinations starting this month end.

Making his comment on the proposed 2017/18 National Budget on Friday, MP for Dowa East Richard Chimwendo-Banda (Malawi Congress Party-MCP) asked government to explain what had been done to resolve the strike.

He described the situation as pathetic and cautioned government that it is sitting on a time bomb as people are tired with what is happening.

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winston msowoyya
Guest

SATANA,I have no time to waste with a rogue who does not complehend the real issues.You and your President are the same in thinking capabilities because no one can advise the other.Any Malawian who can not symphatise with our young courageous children with brains to think what is good or bad,is not fit to live.SATANA OR NO SATANA,MATHANYULA WILL RETURN TO HIS HOMELAND OF USA COME 2019!!!!!!!!

chammadzi
Guest

Infact everything is not on truck. Water board bill, Escom bill, Malawi Housing Coorperation rental adjustments, Maizegate, burning of offices at Capital Hill, CHANCO standoff, Primary school and Secondary saga just to mention a few. I have heard kuti Secondary school teachers are planning not to administer MSCE exams next week until their problems are solved. Zalowa chinambalala

Tryson
Guest

The police officers should just release the learners they caught yestarday coz leaners were fighting for their right to education which has been violeted by the government by not giving teachers their LG. Had it been that the govt paid teachears timely, learners wouldn’t have done this. So they have to be set free coz it is govt’s faut.

Tryson
Guest

Koma zilikuno ku Malawi ndizomvetsa chisoni. Kulephera kupereka ndalama yochepa ngati imenei. On top of that, it was already budgeted that it would given to the teachers last year. Ena . Zikuvuta chifukwa chani. Ena anadyapo apa.

Olira
Guest

Cadets in the making.

john bwanyama
Guest

Do not think politics everyday. Those kids have got guts and know who is not doing his/her job. There is no politics in this. the children just what to force authorities to do something so that they go back to class. Unless you tell me that all parents belong to opposition since i strongly believe that it is parents who should have pumped sense in there kids to do something so that the authorities should come back to their senses and do the right thing.

Wokhudzidwa
Guest

DDP is just adding a little salt to a wound.

DPP Mbava
Guest

Results of corrupt government. Busy miseu coz its easy to over pay Mota and get cash gate.

Chilungamo Chimawawa
Guest

these kids are so brave compared to idiotic adults who dance and hand clap for APM Aand DPP government. these kids are our HEROES. BRAVO KIDS!!!!!!!

Kent Y.G. Mphepo
Guest
From June 14 to 18 1976 South Africa experienced one of the worst student protests in living memory. History books write that anything between 200 and 700 students were brutally massacred by the bullet of the police gun in what has been termed the Soweto Uprising. The main cause of these protests was the introduction of Afrikaans, the language of the elite, in all primary and secondary schools by the White Regime, to replace English and Zulu and other African languages in all instruction. Black students and their teachers did not want this to happen because they new that the… Read more »
Chamunorwa
Guest
If teenagers become violent stoning passing cars what is the police supposed to do. Standby I suppose. Judging from the age of these learners there is a hidden political hand here. A genuine grievance is being turned political. Opposition as the term implies have nothing better to offer. They make their money by opposing every little thing the Government of the day will be trying to do. Granted the teachers must be paid their dues as promised but the use of school children ,I say No. These children do not even know what constitute leave grant. These teachers are always… Read more »
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