Abigail Mawonde Herald Correspondent
Government yesterday assured non-teaching staff at schools that their jobs are safe and dismissed claims by a workers’ union purporting to represent them that they will be dismissed.
Primary and Secondary Education permanent secretary Dr Sylvia Utete-Masango said in an interview that information being peddled by the National Education Union of Zimbabwe (NUEZ) that School Development Committees would be banned was false.
The non-teaching staff, who include bursars and general hands, are mostly employed by the committees.
Dr Utete-Masango doubted the authenticity of NUEZ, which she said was seeking relevance through newspapers.
NUEZ released a Press statement this week alleging that headmasters had informed SDC officials that their services would no longer be needed with effect from this month.
NEUZ secretary general Mr Mathias Guchutu claimed: “Nightmare now awaits both School Development Committees paid teachers and non-teaching staff countrywide at the opening of schools this January 2016.”
But Dr Utete-Masango said the ministry had not made any such communication.
“There is no such arrangement (of job termination),” she said. “Well, if there was, they (NEUZ) should have attached communication from the ministry justifying their claims. We do not have a union that represents SDCs and I do not even know this organisation (NEUZ). Maybe they are seeking relevance through news- papers.”
Dr Utete-Masango said SDCs were not made up of employees, but representatives of parents.
“It is important to note that SDCs are not employed, but they represent the parents’ board,” she said.
“And the duties of a board are to offer services because of their expertise. They may or may not get an allowance depending with the setting.”