Teachers who took part in Friday’s mass protest to demand the resignation of the government are being victimised at their schools.
This morning (21 March 2011) school principals were ordered to submit a list of absent staff members to the regional education office.
The move is being seen as an attempt to victimise those who went on the demonstration and also to intimidate teachers from taking any future action. A number of protests are planned in the coming weeks and an ‘uprising’ on 12 April is being coordinated by a Facebook group.
Today’s move was expected by teachers. On Saturday a Swaziland National Teachers Association (SNAT) Mbabane branch meeting heard that members were worried that they would be victimised for taking part in the march.
The meeting was told that some school principals took down the names of all the teachers who were absent on Friday to participate in the march and then forwarded them to the regional education office.
Muzi Mhlanga, SNAT Secretary General told the worried teachers that SNAT would engage the principals on the matter.
According to a report in the Swazi Observer, the newspaper in effect owned by King Mswati III, some schools had to be closed on Friday as there were no teachers, especially in primary schools.