Tanzania: Teachers' Off-Days Duty Kicks Off Dust

TANZANIA Teachers Union (TTU) in Chamwino District has lodged complaints to authorities over teachers working at the weekends without being paid overtime allowance.

Speaking to reporters here on Tuesday, the Chamwino District TTU Chairman, Mr Clement Mahemba, said primary school teachers had been ordered to work on Saturdays and Sundays contrary to labour laws.

"Working on Saturdays and Sundays has also deprived teachers of their right to worship.

They are off days for civil servants," said the district chairman. Mr Mahemba noted that teachers had been reporting to their duty stations on the two days to carry out their duties and attend meetings to discuss academic performance in their respective schools. "They attend meetings but aren't paid any allowances or given.

It is actually during the off days that they are supposed to prepare lessons for upcoming weeks," he added. Mr Mahemba pointed out that some teachers covered a long distance such as Mlowa-Barabarani to attend the working meetings at weekends, consequently lacking time to prepare lessons for the upcoming weeks.

However, Chamwino District Executive Director, Athumani Massasi said no teacher was forced to report to work at weekends, saying the teachers were doing so voluntarily.

"I am aware of the programme to work on Saturdays and Sundays. But no teacher was forced to report to work on the two days.

They all agreed to work on Saturdays and Sundays to improve the academic performance of their pupils," the DED explained.

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