Zimbabwe’s public sector suspends nationwide planned strike, fear police and military brutality, teachers to down tools

Zimbabwe’s main public sector union has backed down from plans for a national strike, citing the volatile situation after security forces cracked down on protestors this month, but teachers will go ahead with a work stoppage.

The Zimbabwe Teachers Union (ZIMTA) and Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe said in a joint statement on Thursday that their more than 55,000 members will not report for duty from next Tuesday, exposing a split between the education sector and the rest of the civil service.

“Our members will be withdrawing their services/labour and will not be reporting for duty with effect from the said date,” the unions said. A ZIMTA official said other smaller teachers’ groups would likely join the strike.

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