In the education sector, the Action Front for Education Trade Unions in Benin, whose strike entered its fifth week on Tuesday, urged the government not only to sign a decree on promotion of teachers to various job groups, but also to permanently employ part-time teachers.

StrikeThe Front is also asking the government to massively recruit more teachers to fill the shortage currently being witnessed in the primary and secondary schools.

In most schools that Xinhua visited in Benin’s commercial capital, Cotonou, classes were empty. Some school children were seen along the streets.

However, the government said talks with the trade unions were blocked by the country’s financial situation due to high demands by the teachers.

“Implementation of the demands by the teachers’ union will increase the government’s wage bill by 152 billion CFA Francs (about 250 million U.S. dollars). This will make Benin to have a higher wage bill ratio as compared to its peers in the West African Economic and Monetary Union,” said Alassane Soumanou Djimba, Benin’s Minister for Secondary, Technical and Professional Training.

Elsewhere, human resources workers across all public hospitals began their strike without providing services. Due to the strike, most hospitals on Tuesday were deserted and closed.

The health workers went on strike to demand for, among other issues, permanent employment of interns who have been working for over a year and payment of the workers’ allowances for participation in the 2014 campaign to distribute treated mosquito nets. Enditem

Source: Xinhua


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