Faculty members of 33 Sudanese universities have agreed to resume their strike because the authorities will not respond to all their demands, which include an improved salary structure. Sudanese schoolteachers are also considering to re-embark on a strike.
The university staff’s demands are related to a number of employment conditions. One is about allowing Doctors (PhD holders) of retirement age to continue giving their lectures as long as they are willing and able to do so.
The faculty members also demand an improved salary structure for the year 2023.
The Sudanese University Lecturers Committee said in a statement on Sunday that 96 percent of the lecturers voted for a resumption of their strike.
Strikes around unpaid dues and unmet promises already took place in February and in March lecturers went on strike after the ‘unconstitutional’ dismissal of 30 university directors, who were replaced by people chosen by coup leader and Commander of the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) Lt Gen Abdelfattah El Burhan.
Sudanese schoolteachers are also considering to re-embark on a strike. They demand increased wages.
The Sudanese Teachers Committee (STC) announced meetings in the entire country today to discuss escalation and strike possibilities after the deadline set for the authorities to respond to their memorandum by the end of the week.
The committee said in a statement on Sunday that it decided to send delegations to communicate with the Council of Ministers, the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, and the state governments to find out the responses of these bodies to the wage memorandum.
The committee also confirmed its adherence to the establishment of an elected teachers’ union with branches in the states.
Earlier this year, the teachers' committee organised a nationwide comprehensive strike after not receiving their full financial dues, including payments that were owed to them as far back as 2020.
In April, their strike efforts led to a meeting with El Burhan, who is also Chairman of Sudan’s Transitional Sovereignty Council, which resulted in pledges by the Ministry of Finance.
However, the STC accused the ministry of making a U-turn on its promises and ignoring the arrangements earlier this month.
Too few teachers
The EU Commission for Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid remarked today that "sadly, nearly 7 million of Sudan’s children aged between 6 and 18 – or a third of school-aged girls and boys – do not go to school. A further 12 million face significant learning disruptions due to a lack of teachers, infrastructure and an enabling learning environment".
The lack of teachers and safe learning environments was also lamented by aid groups and International Education News.