With the ten-day cooling off period elapsing, trade unions are optimistic tomorrow’s meeting (Monday) will shatter the stagnant teacher wages. Teachers have been expressing their frustration on this for years. They see it as a promise they were given when they were hired but which has been broken.
The two parties involved in the negotiations, BOFEPUSU and the employer, have been working and considering what was put on the table. However Unions are anticipating that tomorrow they will reach common ground.
“I’m convinced the two parties have revisited their principles during the cooling off period and progress can be made in tomorrow’s meeting,” said Tobokani Rari, the Chairperson of salary negotiations.
Rari said after a number of meetings held, reaching a fair teacher pay contract was a top concern.
“We have engaged in a series of meetings, which started on the 17 to the 24 September; with no mutual understanding it will only be fair to strike a deal that will benefit the teacher,” he said. “We do not anticipate reaching a deadlock in our negotiations, we have reached compromises before and, as unions, we are convinced an amicable solution can be found.”
BOFEPUSU is representing its five affiliates which are BTU, BOPEU, BOSETU, BLLWHU and Manual Workers.
Unions have vowed not to be intimidated and, instead, pledged to stay put until their demands are met. Operations in the teaching sector have been paralysed over the years with the employer and trade unions failing to agree.
Initially the Unions had proposed a 3 percent increase top of pyramid down to 30 percent for the lower rank, whilst the employer had proposed a 2 percent increase across the board and a fixed recession allowance of P150 ÔÇô P230.