The Teachers-Principal Trade Union Alliance warns that several new issues could surface if the government fails to provide solutions to salary anomalies of teachers and principals, before reopening schools.
Speaking during a media briefing, Secretary of the Ceylon Teachers’ Service Union Mahinda Jayasinghe said the union struggle has been strengthened unlike ever before amidst statements of Ministers and Members of Parliament who represent the government.
He said the government has taken adequate time to resolve the issue.
Jayasinghe said the government is still focused on delaying tactics and are attempting to intimidate teachers.
He said demanding teachers to return to work by accepting Rs.5,000 is another attempt to stifle the trade union struggle.
He added the government has announced that it intends to resume classes for students of Grade 1 to 5 in the near future.
He said the collective has not decided whether it will boycott the move and refrain from returning to teaching activities but urged the government to resolve salary anomalies before reopening schools.
Mahinda Jayasinghe noted the teacher principal struggle will end only based on the actions of the government.
He said through the use of government affiliated trade unions to hurl baseless allegations at those engaged in the struggle, the government will not be able to end the strike action.
He said they genuinely took steps to hold discussions with the government to resolve the matter.
The General Secretary however said the government was focused on painting a different picture to the public through misinformation.
He said the government has been attempting to tarnish the image of trade union leaders in a bid to pressure them to give up the struggle.
Mahinda Jayasinghe said using such tactics could result in the struggle continuing for 100 days.
He said therefore instead of using cheap political gimmicks, the government must take steps to address the salary anomalies issue of teachers and principals.