GOBABIS: Over 500 hundred teachers from all 43 schools in the Omaheke Region have voted to strike in solidarity with their colleagues in the Khomas and other regions who have already gone on strike.
The teachers decided on the industrial action at a lengthy meeting here on Tuesday. The meeting attracted teachers from all corners of the region, ranging from Eiseb Blok to Aminuis, and Otjinene to Otjombinde.
The teachers will on Wednesday morning march to the office of the Regional Director of Education, Natalia Goagoses, where they will hand over a petition of their intention to strike.
A large section of the teachers however marched to the director’s office on Tuesday already, hoping to drive home the point that all teachers in the region are aggrieved by what is happening.
Although many teachers were aware of the fact that their participation in the strike will be illegal as the strike has been declared as such, most of them were of the opinion that they had no other choice but to embark on such a mission to get their voices heard.
The teachers were spurred on by the President of the Teachers Union of Namibia (TUN)’s Mahongora Kavihuha, who travelled to Gobabis for the meeting.
Kavihuha told teachers that if they wait on a legal strike, they will “wait forever as those in power” do not care much about their needs.
He said the strike the teachers are about to embark on is not based on legal matters, but is one of necessity.
“Threats of illegality of the strike that you hear doing the rounds are nothing but a lame attempt to scare you from striking. Such threats should not move you. They are designed to have you remain poor and unappreciated as you are,” he said.
The teachers also declared a vote of no confidence in the leadership of the Namibia National Teachers’ Union (Nantu), accusing the union of treating their demands for better working conditions “with kid gloves”.
While many of them will remain in the region, the teachers will select members amongst themselves to represent them at the strike in Windhoek.
Teachers have advised parents against sending their children to school as from Wednesday, as there will be no one to supervise them while on school grounds.