Chinamasa to meet striking lecturers

Auxilia Katongomara Chronicle Reporter
FINANCE Minister Patrick Chinamasa is expected to meet striking lecturers and non-teaching staff representatives from State universities on Monday. Chinamasa is expected to negotiate an end to the strike which started on Tuesday. Lecturers and non-teaching staff downed tools in protest over unpaid bonuses and January salaries.

The university workers received their salaries on Wednesday but vowed not to report for duty until they got their bonuses as well.

They said they are still incapacitated and demanded to be paid their bonuses before resuming duties.

Higher and Tertiary Education Permanent Secretary Godfrey Gandawa yesterday told The Chronicle that his ministry together with Finance Minister Chinamasa were going to meet the lecturers’ association leaders on Monday.

“We’re going to meet the leaders of the lecturers’ association on Monday as a ministry together with Finance Minister Cde Patrick Chinamasa to brief them on the bonus issue, discuss the way forward as well as their welfare and challenges they’re facing,” said Gandawa.

The lecturers and non-teaching staff are demanding a fixed pay date from their employer.

“As State universities, we demand a fixed pay date as is the case with all the other government-funded institutions and to seek an audience with the Chancellor, His Excellency Cde R G Mugabe,” read some of the resolutions by the lecturers.

The university staff said they observed that that government was failing to pay them on time.

“Following a meeting held by worker representatives, both teaching and non-teaching at Nust . . . the following observations were made: that the employer is deliberately neglecting his duty of paying employee salaries as and when they are due,” they said.

Zimbabwe State Universities Union of Academics (ZISUUA) national president, Alois Muzvuwe, said the strike would continue.

“There is zero commitment from the employer as yet so the strike continues until the employer shows commitment in addressing our plight,” said Muzvuwe.

The countrywide job action has resulted in the suspension of lectures at Nust, Bindura, University of Zimbabwe, Lupane, Gwanda, Great Zimbabwe and Chinhoyi State universities.

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