Tunisia: ANHRI  Condemns Violently Dispersing Sit-in of Teachers Appointment Competition’s Winners     

Cairo: 11 October 2017

The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI), today, denounced the dispersal of those who won in the Teacher Appointment Competition by force; leaving some of them wounded.

A number of teachers, from across Tunisia, who won in the teachers appointment competition for 2017, known as (Capes), organized a protest outside the Ministry of Education yesterday, October 10, to demand their appointment, after the ministry’s ambiguous stance on dealing with them this year.

At the beginning, the ministry accepted to talk with them, informing them that there would be 4 representatives who will negotiate and discuss their demands. Nonetheless, it reversed its decision; thereafter, there were skirmishes with the security personnel who prevented their entry to the ministry. The security forces fired tear gas canisters, assaulted the protesters and dragged them along the ground; leaving a number of them injured and one girl was taken to the hospital by an ambulance.

Noteworthy, Capes debate is one of the most important competitions in which thousands participate every year to teach in the secondary schools. Anyone holds a bachelor’s degree lasted 3 years or more can apply for this competition. Then, the Ministry of Education determines those who successfully passed the competition to start teaching in a specific institution, and advertise the result on the ministry’s website. This process is called “appointment competition”.

The nominees, this year, were surprised that the competition, in which they participated, is a competition to continue studying for 2 years in higher education to hold Master’s degree without the slightest guarantees for appointment.

“We refuse the dispersal of teachers sit-in by force, as it is a violation of the right to peaceful association as well as the right to freedom of expression. We also refuses resolving the government’s problems through manipulating the dreams and future of young people in mock competitions. It was better for the Tunisian authorities to keep their promises concerning the appointment of those competitors who passed the tests of the ministry,” ANHRI said.

ANHRI calls on the Minister of Education to necessarily intervene to discuss with the teachers about the future of their appointment. It also calls on the Ministry of Interior not to violently interfere to resolve social issues that necessitate the government to do its role in finding job opportunities for the youth.