Ugandan teachers end strike after meeting President Museveni

The Uganda National Teachers' Union (UNATU) on Monday announced the suspension of a weeks-long strike following a meeting with President Yoweri Museveni.

Pupils attend class at Kitante Primary School in Kampala, Uganda Monday, Jan. 10, 2022. (File photo: CFP)

The union's members, comprising of primary school teachers and their secondary school counterparts who teach arts subjects, have been on strike since June 15 over alleged pay enhancement disparity between themselves and teachers of science subjects.

Before Monday's meeting, UNATU's leadership had met with other top government officials, including the vice president, but did not reach any agreement.

The latest meeting was also attended by Uganda's First Lady Janet Museveni, who doubles up as the Minister of Education and Sports.

Following that meeting, President Museveni noted that the government will work to competitively remunerate workers "guided by a science-led strategy."

On his part, UNATU General Secretary, Filbert Baguma said the union's decision to end the strike was advised by the need for learning to go on in the country's schools.

"We decided to suspend the industrial action as we continue to engage government for the good of our learners because we don't want them to lose a lot, and the teachers themselves," local Daily Monitor news outlet quotes Baguma.

"After the meeting with the president we had to come back here and consult ourselves on the next step we should take. We deliberated for three hours and agreed that the teachers return to class starting Wednesday (July 6)," he added.