ZIMBABWE Open University (ZOU) part-time lecturers have gone for two semesters without being paid their allowances, NewsDay has established.
The lecturers have not received their allowances for August to November 2022 and February to June 2023 semesters.
The university is also reportedly failing to provide students with basic learning facilities and such tools as internet and modules.
Officials at the State-run institution have been accused of splurging huge sums of money on rentals for office buildings and buying new vehicles for top management, while neglecting workers.
One disgruntled lecturer, who refused to be named for fear of victimisation, said ZOU was reluctant to pay part-time lecturers.
“That no one bothers to engage the part-time tutors shows that the tutors are not valued at all. Engage us, we really want to know what your challenges are,” the lecturer said.
The university management confirmed failing to pay its workers in an emailed response to NewsDay.
“The delay in making payment is attributed to irregularities observed on some claims submitted by part-time tutors, which necessitated a comprehensive audit,” ZOU said in a statement.
“Part-time tutor rates are pegged in USD [United States dollars] and paid at the exchange rate ruling on the day of payment to ensure that there is no loss of value.”
Higher and Tertiary Education minister Amon Murwira yesterday said the ministry was obliged to ensure State institutions are “running smoothly” to improve the quality of education.
“Even in these difficult times, we always try to make sure that we improve the quality of education by capacitating lecturers’ at all State universities,” he said. — NewsDay