West Funding Teachers To Destabilise Govt – Minister Mavima
The circus continues with Acting Public Service Minister Paul Mavima accusing western countries of funding teachers’ unions to destabilise the Zanu PF-led government through recurrent salary strikes.
In an interview with Studio 7 on Wednesday, Mavima accused the Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ) of being funded by some unnamed foreign donors to incite civil unrest through salary strikes.
Mavima said the government was making efforts to address teachers’ concerns, but the teachers’ unions do not care about the government’s efforts.
"Some teachers’ organizations such as Artuz do not care about the government’s efforts to address their concerns," Mavima said.
"What they are concerned about is to criticise government despite its efforts to improve the welfare of teachers. They do this in order to get funds from the donors to promote violence. What we know is that they are being funded by foreign countries to destabilise the country.”
Artuz however denied that it had external funding and said its membership constituted a large number of teachers in the country.
"We wish to categorically and unequivocally posit that Artuz is a progressive revolutionary teachers’ union formed on the behest of perennial abuse of teachers in Zimbabwe since time immemorial,” Artuz secretary general Robson Chere said.
"Artuz was not formed to go to bed with the employer, but to further the interests and welfare of teachers and learners in Zimbabwe. That is our sacred moral and constitutional duty. We will serve."
The Zimbabwean Government has a known record of accusing civic society groups of being funded by the West to effect regime change.
Teachers are demanding that the government restore their pre-2018 October salary levels of between US$520 and US$550 or equivalence in local currency. But the government is satisfied with its workers’ salaries in which the least paid is earning $30 000, which is equivalent to US$ 187 per month.