KWEKWE – There was chaos Monday morning at Emthonjeni Government Primary school after parents besieged offices and classrooms demanding to meet the headmaster and School Development Association (SDA) to answer allegations of fraud and mismanagement.
REPORT BY BLESSED MHLANGA
Police had to be called in to disperse parents, who were baying for blood, after deputy head Julian Murisa refused to speak to them and instead locked herself in the office..
Parents who spoke to Southern Eye said they were angered after teachers staged a sit-in demanding to be paid their incentives of $150 per term – which they allege have not been paid since January.
“Our children have not been attending lessons because teachers are now siting in demanding that their incentives be paid. We have been trying to meet the head and the SDA committee, but they have been refusing,” Mavis Muronda, a parent said,.
Parents accused the committee of abusing school funds, saying they have been refusing to produce audited financial statements at annual general meetings and called on the government to remove Murisa from the school.
Murisa, who was at one time the acting head, was suspended from duty in August last year after a government audit said she had failed to execute her duties and had plundered school resources.
According to the audit report, Murisa allegedly withdrew thousands of dollars through the SDA chaired by Siran Chishanu, reportedly for paying teachers’ incentives, but the money never reached the intended beneficiaries.
“Of $83 608 noted cash withdrawn in 2011 and 2012 towards payment of teacher incentives, about $23 912 does not appear in the relevant teachers’ incentive acquittal register, as having been paid out,” part of the report read.
Teachers who spoke to Southern Eye, although denying reports that they had staged a sit-in, said they were not receiving their incentives and the SDA had refused to meet them to discuss the matter.
Murisa barred the SDA vice- chairman, only Identified as Marima, from speaking to the Press, saying nobody could touch her or talk about the state of the school without her permission.
“I am the head of this school and you cannot talk to the SDA. I have barred them from speaking to you,” she said interrupting Marima as he was about to address the media.
Parents vowed that they would not bring their children to school today if the impasse was not resolved.