Zimbabwe’s teachers unions to strike next week over pay

HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) — Zimbabwe’s teachers unions say they will strike for better salaries starting on Tuesday after plans for a collective action by all civil servants failed.

The strike by some 100,000 teachers presents a fresh headache for President Emmerson Mnangagwa, whose deployment of soldiers to crack down on protests over a dramatic fuel price hike has received global condemnation.

Most Zimbabweans, already struggling to put food on the table, rely on the cheaper public schools for their children’s education.

The Zimbabwe Teachers Association and the Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe are demanding “meaningful” salaries.

The average public school teacher’s salary is $100, using black market exchange rates relied on by most businesses.

Zimbabwe’s public education sector was once one of the best in Africa but the economy has collapsed in recent years.