Chancellor College Academic Staff Union (CCASU) has bashed the Tonse Alliance administration for intimidating leaders of the Teachers Union of Malawi (TUM), saying the government wants to take Malawians back to a period when unions were prohibited.
In a press statement on Wednesday, CCASU president Tiyesere Mercy Chikapa expressed concern over the government’s handling of the teachers’ strike.
According to CCASU, Government threatened teachers with dismissals, used subtle tactics to divide leaders of the union and threatened to delete from payroll or withhold salaries of striking teachers. Government also attempted to cripple TUM financially by threatening to stop collecting monthly union fees from teachers.
Chikapa also expressed surprise that another union for secondary schools was formed during the period teachers were on strike.
She said the underhand tactics employed by Government were aimed at “stifling unionism and they threatened to take Malawians back to “an era when unionism was anathema”.
“CCASU would like to condemn these tactics in the strongest possible terms as they are an attack on unionism and therefore a threat to democracy. Se urge Government to act in good faith, not maliciously and uphold the constitution and the Labour Relations Act at all times,” she said,
Teachers in Malawi stayed away from work in for several week in March and in April as they were demanding K35,000 Covid-19 allowances from Government.