GZU workers give ultimatum

HARARE - Great Zimbabwe University (GZU) workers have given Vice Chancellor Rungano Zvobgo a 14-day ultimatum to address challenges they are facing at the institution.

In a letter to Zvobgo dated April 16 the workers said if he failed to address their grievances they will embark on industrial action.

“Following the meeting with all staff members on March 28, 2018, we are hereby bringing to your attention the situation which your staff is experiencing which urgently needs your intervention as head of the institution.

“From the look of things staff have suffered neglect by management to the extent that their welfare has deteriorated as compared to the standards set out in the Labour Act Chapter 28:01.

“On this note, let us quickly highlight to you that if you fail to address the grievances, there will be no other option than industrial action.” the letter reads.

The workers demanded Zvobgo to address nepotism, poor financial management (infrastructure), widespread corruption, tempering with employees’ benefits, too many litigations (grievances falling on deaf ears), poor university administration, review of policies, protective clothing, delayed staff promotions (teaching and non-teaching), overtime payments, contact and sabbatical, office space, Internet facilities, leave days management and correct staff grading among others .

“The above issues must be addressed within 14 working days failure of which we will not be held accountable for any industrial action that shall be taken,” added the letter.

Efforts to get comment from Zvobgo were fruitless as his mobile phone was not available, however, Great Zimbabwe University Information director Anderson Chipatiso said he was in Bulawayo and he was not aware of that issue.

“I am in Bulawayo I don’t know about that issue,” Chipatiso said.

Early this month, GZU students based at Mashava campus went on a rampage destroying property and looting food in the dining hall over allegations of “arbitrary” fees increase by authorities.

The students fought running battles with anti-riot police who threw teargas to quell the protest.

The students alleged that the demonstration was mainly triggered by the increase of semester fees from $650 to $700.

They alleged that they were not consulted before the increase and also complained about poor food quality, poor Internet connectivity and inadequate buses to transport them to and from their learning centres.

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