The Namibia National Teachers’ Union (NANTU) and the Trade Union of Education of Finland (OAJ), two EI affiliates, have signed a three-year agreement on training.
NANTU Secretary General Basilius Haingura signed the agreement on behalf of NANTU, while OAJ special advisor Ritva Semi signed on behalf of the Finnish union, on 31 January in Windhoek.
NANTU: Increase dialogue between stakeholders
Haingura insisted that the agreement’s main goal is to promote the NANTU members’ civil rights, as well as democratic decision-making processes and social dialogue between NANTU members, unions, and education leaders and the education administration.
“The agreement specifically aims at strengthening the role of civil society in education and the development of education,” said Haingura. “One of its main aims is to reinforce the role of civil society and the teachers’ union at local level.”
Talking about the need for trained and qualified teachers, he said that the agreement shows NANTU’s persistent efforts to train its members in labour law and other issues pertaining to the professional development of its members.
OAJ: Developing status of trade unions worldwide
Semi said the OAJ had decided to work with NANTU because it wants to develop education, as well as the status of trade unions, globally.
She pointed out that in order for a country to earn a good education status, dialogue between trade unions and the government needs to be considered normal. “Both sides need to work together and have a good relationship for beneficial outcomes,” Semi said.
Semi also commended the Namibian government for the free public primary education policy implemented this year. “I believe that free education is very important, because it is the only way to educate the whole nation,” she said.
OAJ will offer financial assistance and provide technical support during a three-year period for NANTU training activities, she added.