STRIKING teachers in Dar es Salaam have been given seven days to explain as to why disclipinary and legal actions should not be taken against them.
The Dar es Salaam Regional Commissioner, Mr Saidi Meck Sadiki, told a news conference in the city that out of 12,130 primary school teachers in the city, 3,715 (about 30.63 per cent) did not report for duty without any reason.
He further said that out 4,332 secondary school teachers in Dar es Salaam only 742 (17.1 per cent) did not report and the rest (3,589) including those with sick permission and studying permits reported to their schools. The RC reiterated his call that relevant authorities would take measures against people convincing teachers to go on strike.
The call was supported by police in Dar es Salaam who have launched crackdown on people suspected to be issuing threats to teachers who are against the on-going illegal strike that started on Monday. Addressing a news conference in Dar es Salaam, Special Zone Police Commander, Mr Suleiman Kova, said there was a group moving around issuing threats.
"Police in the region have tightened security in schools and other areas to ensure teachers, students and pupils are not disturbed as investigations are going on to identify those behind the strike," he said.
Mr Kova called on the teachers who have refused to join the illegal strike to alert the police immediately whenever they receive such threats. Mr Kova warned people carrying on a campaign to convince others from taking part in the coming housing and population census.
"We have information on the people behind the campaign -- as the police we are investigating the matter," he said adding that legal action will be taken against the culprits.
In another development, the Kilimanjaro Regional Police Commander, Mr Robert Boaz, has dispelled fear among teachers who have reported for duty in their respective schools. He asked them to report immediately any unruly incidents that could be perpetrated by their colleagues currently on strike.
He told teachers who have decided to remain on duty that the police force has the responsibility of enforcing the law of the land and ensure safety of the people and their property.
"I wish to inform all teachers who have complied with the government's directive not to be intimidated by their defiant colleagues. "The police force will be on high alert to ensure that they are not intimidated by a few striking teachers," the Regional Police chief reiterated.
Meanwhile, a survey by the 'Daily News' here yesterday has revealed that in Rombo District 74 teachers in 156 primary schools signed the attendance register and left. Nine teachers in 12 primary schools signed the book but did not go to classes while 50 teachers in 41 secondary schools signed the book and left.
In Hai district, teachers at Harambee, Lemira, Uduru and Lyasikika were on strike while teachers at Sawe Secondary school attended for duty but refrained from attending classes. Some 186 secondary school teachers and 135 primary school teachers were on strike on Monday.
A survey also revealed that all teachers at Kibosho, Mabogini and Mabogini primary schools were all on strike and did not report for duty. All teachers at Kilema and Marangu primary schools were on duty as usual while 50 per cent of the teaching staff and the headmaster were on duty at Mangi Marealle Secondary School while 10 per cent of the teachers reported but did not go to classes to teach. About 10 per cent did not report for duty.
In Mwanga district, teachers at Kigonigoni Secondary School, except the headmaster, did not report for duty while attendance at Kifaru, Kwangu, Kilomeni, Asha Rose Migiro and Kileo Secondary Shools teachers' attendance was 50 per cent.
It also came to light that 129 secondary school teachers reported for duty and went to classes while 11 did not report for duty. 25 reported but refused to go to classes to teach. Some 34 teachers were attending further education while of the 454 primary school teachers, only two did not report for duty.
In Same district, affected primary schools whose teachers were on strike were Makanya and Hedaru. All teachers and headteachers at Makanya primary school did not report for duty while in Malindi Primary school only five teachers reported for duty but were reluctant to go to classes.
In Moshi municipality, 96 secondary school teachers were on strike while 115 were on duty as usual. Some 147 primary school teachers were on strike while 186 were on duty. Survey by this newspaper in various regions indicates that teachers are divided as many of them had decided to teach.
Meanwhile the High Court of Tanzania Labour Division will give its ruling over the dispute between government and teachers on Thursday.
After both sides had presented their case, the presiding Judge, Sophia Wambura, gave her decision at around 6pm yesterday after a thirty minutes recess. Obadia Kamea and Pius Mboya, advocates representing the government, argued among other issues, that the Tanzania Teachers' Association used a wrong law to stage their strike.
They said they were supposed to use the Public Service (negotiating) Machinery Act of 2003 which gives a 60-day notice, instead of the Employment and Labour Relations Act of 2006 which gives a 48 hours notice.
Legal representatives of the TTU side Gabriel Mnyere defended the teachers' move noting that the Employment and Labour Relations Act of 2006 stipulates that both public and private employees can use it when staging for a strike.
The TTU Secretary General, Ezekiah Oluoch, said teachers will be on strike until the High Court Labour Division gives its ruling.