5 September 2017

Burundi: Teachers Complain About Redeployment Process

Dozens of teachers newly redeployed to different schools have staged a sit-in in front of the Ministry of Education since the last week. "This is a grave injustice", says angrily a teacher who has been moved 50 km away from his home and former school. As many teachers indicated, the redeployment is not a wrong act but the criteria used by officials of the provincial commission in charge of the redeployment process are unfair and destabilizing.

"It is totally unfair to separate parents from their children from one commune to another, ignoring the psychological, financial and social impacts of such an act," says a woman redeployed from Ngozi province center to 25km away from her home. She says she suffers from a chronic disease and can't work far from her home. According to others, the redeployment comes to worsen teachers' living conditions which were already deplorable. "The commission in charge of redeployment should consider our concerns", says a 22 year old woman from Songa commune in Bururi southern province. She was redeployed to Kibago Commune, in Makamba southern Province, near the Burundi-Tanzania border.

Juma Edouard, spokesperson for the Ministry of Education, says the redeployment of staff aims at improving the management of human resources and was carried out fairly. "This operation aims at the rational use of human resources and their equitable distribution at all levels", he says.

He, however, recognizes that the decision might have not gone down well with some teachers. Mr Edouard reminds that the redeployment process is carried out in the presence of all teachers in concert with their headmasters and the redeployment committees at the central level, by taking into account the number of classes available. "The number of teachers required is determined on the basis of the schools and students' needs", he says.

For the teachers who feel uncomfortable with the decision, the spokesperson for the Ministry says the technical commission that has worked with the teachers will listen to their clams in order to find possible solutions.

Burundi

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