Nurses rally in solidarity with teachers

The Zimbabwe Nurses Association (ZINA) have vowed to down tools if the government goes ahead with suspending teachers.

On February 10, 2022, Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, Dr Evelyn Ndlovu, announced that the ministry has suspended all teachers who were absent from duty since schools opened last Monday for three months without pay.

Teacher unions dismissed the suspension as a military move to force teachers to report for duty.

In a show of solidarity, ZINA said the education ministry was acting in an insensitive manner to the teachers yet it should have instituted dialogue first.

“In any event, the suspension is unlawful and has no basis in law,” said the nurses association in a statement.

The nurses association highlighted that the plight of teachers was the plight of every member in the civil service, bemoaning that the government had ignored workers’ concerns.

“The press statement was issued after members of the teaching profession had reached out to their employer citing their incapacitated state that has affected provision  of teaching services,” ZINA said.

“It is no secret that the ordinary cost of living has gone up significantly and the costs are now pegged in United States Dollars.”

ZINA pointed out the attitude taken by the government in response to such genuine concerns was representative of the careless manner it viewed the plight of all public employees

“To this end, we confirm that we stand in solidarity with the teaching profession and echo the grievances they have made to the government. Instead of using threatening tactics,  the government must engage in genuine dialogue and desist from making unilateral offers that do not address the grievances raised,” said the association.

The health workers also implored the government to “immediately” revoke the unlawful suspensions issued out to teachers.

“The government must invite not only the teaching professions but the civil service at large to the neighbouring table to find a lasting solution,” ZINA said.

“Should it become clear that the government intends to proceed with its unlawful position, nurses in Zimbabwe will have to consider their positions as we cannot watch our colleagues punished for grievances that we all have.”

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