Secondary School teachers expresses dismay over treatment by MANEB

Secondary School Teachers Union (SESTU) says it is deeply concerned and dismayed with the current practices and decisions by the Malawi National Examinations Board (MANEB) regarding the allocation and remuneration of teachers involved in the administration of national examinations.

The union has since written MANEB again asking it to immediately work on a number of issues and has threatened to mandate its members to cease administering the ongoing Malawi School Certificate of Education (MSCE) Examinations if nothing tangible comes out.

In the letter signed by President Pilirani Kapolo and General Secretary Druwen Frank Moyo and made available to Nyasa Times, the union argues that teachers have endured systemic neglect and abuse for far too long, and it is imperative that this cycle is broken.

“Firstly, we are deeply troubled by the decision to allocate supervisors and invigilators on a commuting basis instead of providing residential arrangements. This decision blatantly ignores the significant transport challenges faced across the country. Despite our prior advice and numerous appeals to MANEB to reconsider this arrangement, our concerns have consistently fallen on deaf ears,” explains Moyo.

And reacting to news that MANEB will pay allowances for the main papers at MSCE Examinations in instalments, Moyo said this is uncalled for and unacceptable.

“The issue of paying allowances in instalments is unacceptable. It is inconceivable how MANEB expects teachers to effectively perform their duties when they are not fully compensated for their work upfront. This delay in payment is not only a financial burden but also demoralising. We urge MANEB to expedite the payment of the remaining balances before the end of this week. Failure to do so will leave the union with no choice but to mandate our members to cease administering examinations,” added Moyo.

The union has strongly requested MANEB to convene a meeting with it before marking of JCE and MSCE examinations to address and resolve logistical issues in advance saying should MANEB fail to arrange the meeting, SESTU will be compelled to instruct teachers across Malawi to abstain from participating in marking of the examinations this year.

Moyo went on to dispute the fact that MSCE Examinations have started on a god note as purported by government recently.

“We earlier said we are administering these examinations under protest because we have outstanding issues with MANEB. It is not true that examinations have started on a good note. This is a total lie. Government should not look at the candidates’ side alone. It should also look at the administration side,” lamented Moyo.

“We trust that MANEB will take these matters seriously and act swiftly to rectify these issues. The well-being and fair treatment of our teachers are paramount, and we expect immediate and meaningful action from MANEB to address our concerns,” reads the concluding part of the letter.

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