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Zimbabwe Education Minister Pledges to Keep Engaging Striking Teachers

Zimbabwean Education Minister David Coltart said on Wednesday that the unity government will continue to engage striking teachers aiming to bring them back into classrooms.

Members of the Zimbabwe Teachers Association launched a full strike last week as a new term opened in the country's primary and secondary schools, while those of the Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe are staying away on Thursdays and Fridays.

Coltart told VOA that he spoke Wednesday with PTUZ officials and on Tuesday evening had a meeting with ZIMTA leaders, and more meetings are tentatively scheduled.

ZIMTA officials are demanding a salary increase from an average of about US$150 to US$500 a month, which the government has said is beyond its means at present.

Education Minister Coltart told reporter Sithandekile Mhlanga of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that he hopes talks will be fruitful so teachers can return to their classrooms.

More reports from VOA'S Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...