Government will continue paying Early Childhood Development (ECD) teachers who are already employed but has frozen the recruitment of more teachers for such classes, Primary and Secondary Education Minister Professor Paul Mavima has said.
Prof Mavima dismissed claims of policy inconsistency in Government, saying Finance and Economic Development Minister Patrick Chinamasa indicated that Treasury did not have the resources to recruit an additional 6 000 teachers.
He said schools could recruit more teachers through School Development Committees.
The latest announcement puts paid to speculation that Minister Chinamasa wanted to stop paying salaries for ECD teachers.
“Let me say that there is no policy inconsistency with ourselves and the Finance Ministry,” he said. “The teachers who are in stream continue to be supported by Treasury.
“We needed to recruit additional teachers for ECD, almost 6 000 of them, but Treasury indicated that at this particular point in time, we do not have fiscal space to do that.
“The Ministry of Finance has committed to pay as soon as the fiscal space permits and that is when we are going to allow for the recruitment of the additional teachers.”
Prof Mavima was responding to questions without notice posed by Glen View North legislator (MDC-T) Fani Munengami, as well as Chegutu West National Assembly member Cde Dexter Nduna (Zanu-PF).
Prof Mavima emphasised that schools should not turn away pupils for non-payment of fees and other levies but should arrange for payment plans.
Schools, he said, should not withhold results, as well as turn away vulnerable children under the Basic Education Assistence Module for non-payment.
“We are bound by our Constitution to respect the right of the learner to education so on that basis no school is supposed to turn back any learner for non-payment,” said Prof Mavima.
Separately, Local Government, Public Works and National Housing Minister Mr July Moyo said Government was in the process of regularising some of the unplanned settlements in urban areas.
Houses constructed in wetlands, including those located where there is no reticulation or water services, he said, will be reviewed first.
He said land barons will be brought to book.