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Zimbabwe Teachers March Over Wages, Intimidation by ZANU-PF Militia

About 200 members of the Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe marched to the offices of the Public Service Commission in Harare on Monday to protest low salaries and what they allege is harassment youth militia of President Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF party.

PTUZ President Takavafira Zhou told reporter Patience Rusere of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that the teachers, who boycotted classes on Friday, decided to demonstrate as well to pressure the government to respond to their wage and other demands.

The union is asking for a minimum salary of US$454 a month.

The teachers union said ZANU-PF youth militia, deeply implicated in post-election violence in 2008, have set up bases in schools around the country and are intimidating teachers.

Education Minister David Coltart said the government does not have the money to meet the union's salary demands - but told VOA his ministry would look into militia activity.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...