Durban – Teachers under Adult Basic Education and Training (ABET) are camping outside the Higher Education Department’s offices in Durban, demanding to be paid their salaries.
The teachers, who claimed to not have been paid for months, started camping outside the offices on Monday and continued on Tuesday.
They said they decided to come and demand answers from the officials because they were not attending to their grievances. One of the teachers who said she was last paid eight months ago, accused officials of playing hide-and-seek with them, saying every time they enquired about their payments they were told to send claims which in turn were not attended to.
She said they will camp outside the offices until they are paid their salaries. She accused officials of being arrogant after locking them out on Monday, refusing to allow them inside the offices.
"We stayed here until late yesterday, but our delegation was eventually allowed to get in so today we have come here again to receive feedback. We will not go back home without being paid our salaries. Some of the ABET schools have been closed due to non-payment of salaries as no one will work for eight months without a salary,” said a teacher.
Teachers said their families are starving and now being harassed by creditors. Some said they have received threats from banks to repossess their vehicles. Higher Education and Training spokesperson Ishmael Mnisi said he would liaise with the officials in the province to find out what’s going on.
ABET previously fell under the Department of Basic Education prior to being moved to Higher Education and Training, where they were placed under TVET colleges, and are now community education centres under Minister Blade Nzimande.
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