Education sector not affected by job freeze
THE Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, which is grappling with an acute shortage of teachers, will not be affected by the freezing of recruitment of employees and promotions effected by the Government, Minister Lazarus Dokora has said.
The Government froze the recruitment of employees and promotions in the civil service at the beginning of this month as part of its staff rationalisation exercise in line with recommendations of the Civil Service Report of 2015.
The rationalisation also saw the Government abolishing more than 8 000 posts in the Ministry of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development.
Minister Dokora yesterday said his ministry, which has the highest number of civil servants, had engaged the Public Service Commission (PSC) to get clarification over the issue.
“We engaged the PSC after the freezing of posts and I’m happy to say they clarified that the education ministry will not be affected by the job freeze. Wherever teachers or headmasters are required, they will be deployed.
“The ministry is grappling with a serious shortage of teachers, especially in rural areas, with some schools being run by deputy heads and an inadequate number of teachers,” said Minister Dokora.
In June this year, Minister Dokora said Treasury gave his ministry the green light to recruit 10 000 teachers and headmasters at the beginning of the second term.
He said the country must have a maximum of 130 000 teachers, the number which Treasury can afford to pay.
The country, according to the Zimbabwe Teachers’ Association (Zimta), has about 120 000 teachers in employment, leaving a shortfall of 10,000. About 25 000 teachers are said to be out of work. Matabeleland North provincial education director Mrs Boithatelo Mnguni this week said the shortage of teachers had resulted in most schools operating with skeleton staff. — @pamelashumba1