Nationwide Teachers Protest Continues

Thousands of Honduras students are still without classes due to the strike by teachers demanding the government clear arrears to their pension and benefits fund.

The protest of hundreds of teachers that began last week was extended “nationwide” and continues today according to the president of the Coprumh union, Eduardo Casaña.

Thousands of teachers from all over the country gathered at Francisco Morazan University in Tegucigalpa to demand that President Porfirio Lobo’s government pay off the debt from the previous administration of Mel Zelaya. Casaña said that the protest will continue until Lobo sits down to negotiate with them.

The striking teachers say the government owes some 3 billion lempiras ($159 million) to their pension and benefits fund.

President Lobo and the Education Minister, Alejandro Ventura repeatedly have promised that the government’s debt to them will be paid over time, but that the educators must not leave their classrooms. Lobo has impressed upon them to make sure the children and young people continue to get their education.

A commitment to pay 1,779 million lempiras to Inprema was signed last night between the Finance Minister, William Chong Wong, and the Education Secretary, Alejandro Ventura, in the presence of the owner of Inprema, Luis Lara. The commitment outlines that the monies will be paid by December 31, 2010.

Teachers were notified that employer contributions during 2010 were going to paid with bonds within five years. The teachers rejected that agreement, because it is to be distributed in bonds. The teachers say they have already been awarded bonds, but they have not been paid.

“The negotiations were conducted with the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Finance, but not with the teachers, so the agreement is between the government,” according to Eduardo Casaña, and therefore unacceptable.

One Response to "Nationwide Teachers Protest Continues"

  1. Axel Reyes Bogran  August 10, 2010 at 5:37 pm

    With what this teachers are teaching, probably the right thing to do is hire teachers from another country who would be more concerned about teaching our kids the things that will help them in the future, not all of this
    “Social Class Separation” and “Hate the Rich” programs that seem to be the only thing they are willing to impart in the classroom.
    Many of these so called ‘teachers’ do not even know how to spell correctly most of the words they teach.
    Honduras is in the process of changing for the better, and it is people like these so called”teachers” the ones that hold it back from reaching a better future.
    Stand firm President Lobo, you are one of the first National Leaders in many years whom seems to understand the realities of our nation, do not give in, I support your position that people should get pay for their work only when they actually do it, and do it well.

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