TUN gives MoE until Jan 2015 to sort out teachers' problems

20 Aug 2014 18:50pm
WINDHOEK, 20 AUG (NAMPA) - Some teachers have to disclose highly private information, such as medical information, when applying for leave, the Teachers' Union of Namibia (TUN) president has said.
“This violates teachers’ right to secrecy,” said TUN president Mahongora Kavihuha during a media briefing here on Wednesday.
He made these claims following his visit to seven regions of the country between May and August 2014 to discuss with teachers various issues which hamper their performances.
The regions visited are Omaheke, Oshikoto, Omusati, Oshana, Ohangwena, Zambezi and Otjozondjupa.
Kavihuha added that teachers are also forced to find a replacement when they go on leave, and have to pay the relief teachers themselves, even if they have completed a leave form.
He noted that teachers are not being informed about their accrued leave days at all, saying it is the right of the teachers to know information about their human resources-related issues.
The TUN president also expressed concern that some regional offices deny teachers access to their offices for assistance, and there is lack of feedback when teachers apply for teaching positions.
The probation period of teachers, heads of departments (HoDs) and principals are not being confirmed on time, he said.
This kind of delays prevent teachers, HoDs and principals from applying for other promotional positions, said the union leader.
He added that there are still delays in the payment of teachers on time, adding that teachers are not allowed to move to other schools in the same town even if they want to go and occupy their specialised fields.
“Principals and inspectors are abusing their powers in terms of not allowing or approving their transfers, and are threatening them with disapproval if they do not do this or that,” Kavihuha claimed.
He said he also learned that there are teachers who had been transferred to other regions but their employment files and pay points have not been changed, resulting in these teachers not seeing their pay slips for almost two years.
“To be specific, the Khomas and Otjozondjupa regions are the culprits in this,” said Kavihua.
He said the two reports had already been submitted with the Minister of Education David Namwandi and his Permanent Secretary Alfred Ilukena, adding that if the MoE does not respond to the teachers' problems by January 2015, the union will take action.