Teachers Rally for Postponing School Opening Amidst Election Dispute
Teachers across the country have appealed to the government to consider postponing school opening for the third term, citing concerns over heightened political tensions following the recent disputed elections. The safety of staff and children is at stake due to potential protests announced by the opposition Citizens Coalition for Change party.
Safety Concerns Amidst Political Unrest
With schools scheduled to reopen on Monday, teachers and students have previously been caught in the midst of violent protests. The opposition party’s intentions to stage demonstrations aim to push for a fresh election under the supervision of the Southern African Development Community and the African Union.
Uncertainty and Volatility
Tapedza Zhou, the Secretary-General of the Educators Union of Zimbabwe, expressed grave concern over the situation, describing it as “dangerously calm” yet prone to sudden escalation. He emphasized that the safety of teachers and students cannot be guaranteed, stating that the decision to open schools is merely a facade, risking the lives of those involved.
Recklessness in the Current Political Climate
Obert Masaraure, the leader of the Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe, echoed similar sentiments, deeming it reckless to open schools amidst the current political environment. He emphasized the need to prioritize the safety of both teachers and learners.
“We fear for the safety of both teachers and learners in the current context,” stated Masaraure. “We recommend that the opening of schools be postponed by a week to allow political tensions to diffuse.”
Government Denies Postponing School Opening
Amidst widespread reports on social media suggesting a delay in school opening until September 12, Deputy Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, Edgar Moyo, dismissed the claims as false. He denounced the prevalence of misinformation and false reports, affirming that schools are scheduled to open as planned, reported newsday.