MBABANE: Mbongwa Dlamini, the President of the Swaziland National Association of Teachers (SNAT) said they would force government to pay contract teachers who were engaged since the 22nd March 2021.
This comes after Lady Howard-Mabuza, the Minister of Education and Training in a press briefing held on or around 19 March ordered that all teachers including those whose contract expired in December last year should report for duty. The Minister had promised the teachers that they would sign their new contracts at a later date, but when these teachers received their posting letters on Wednesday they discovered that their engagement was not backdated to the 22nd March 2021 but were told their official engagement would begin from the 7th April 2021.
Speaking to this Swaziland News on Thursday, the SNAT President said government was promoting the exploitation of teachers by allowing School Principals to force them to work without valid employment contracts.
“The Ministry should have issued a circular that would spell out clear whether teachers whose contracts had expired should report for duty. Now contract teachers are being intimidated by Head Teachers to render their services free of charge and government is turning a blind eye on that yet it’s her responsibility to provide job opportunities for the citizens. We plead to Head Teachers to stop exploiting our comrades , those who have already been exploited should register with the union so we can force the Head Teachers and government to compensate them”, said the SNAT President.
When reached for comments, Lady Howard-Mabuza, the Minister of Education and Training did not want to commit herself on this matter.
“What are you talking about? I don’t understand your question”, she said.
But in a press briefing held on or around the 19 March 2021, the Minister ordered all teachers including those whose contracts expired in December last year to report for duty on the 22nd March 2021.
“In preparation for the re-opening on the 29th March 2021, all teachers, from primary to secondary are requested to return to their duty stations as of Monday, 22nd March 2021. This is to ensure that they prepare schools to be ready to welcome learners for effective teaching and learning. The same sentiments also apply to teachers who are engaged on contract terms. The Teaching Service Commission will announce dates and venues for contract signing”, said the Minister at the press briefing.