Around 241,000 teachers of 14 trade unions around the country will go on strike today (4) against alleged political appointments to the education sector of the country. Ceylon Teachers’ Union (CTU) General Secretary Joseph Stalin speaking to Daily News said they had held discussions with the Prime Minister yesterday evening over the stopping of these political appointments but he had stated that he would have to discuss matters with other parties, before making a decision.
Teachers as a result will go on sick leave today (4) and a protest march from Buddhadasa Stadium in Kaduwela to the Isurupaya Education Ministry in Battaramulla has been organised at 9.30am.
“We admit there were those who were politically victimised by the former regime. But they can be given compensation, why are they being given appointments above their grade? Teachers are being promoted as principals without a proper exam. We cannot allow the Education sector to be politicised”, said Stalin. He further explained that the Education Ministry had planned to make 4,200 political appointments of their supporters soon, “They have already received Cabinet and Public Service Commission approval”.
Education Minister Akila Viraj Kariyawasam condemned the trade union action stating that several politically motivated trade unions in the education sector are trying to destroy the education system.
“These trade unions are going to boycott reporting for duty against the Education Ministry measures to promote 1,011 teachers and principals, who have been subjected to political revenge during the last regime,” he said.