The Collective of Teachers-Researchers and Researchers (CODEC) and other teachers’ unions are planning to hold nationwide protests on Thursday, February 28, as negotiations with the government have stalled. Demonstrations at public universities throughout Côte d’Ivoire are expected to start at 09:00 (local time). Student groups are also planning to hold marches throughout the country to protest the ongoing teacher strike. The FESCI student union is calling for supporters to gather at the University of Abidjan campus at 09:30. Heightened security measures and localized traffic disruptions are expected in major urban areas, particularly in Abidjan. Clashes between security forces and protesters cannot be ruled out.
Talks broke down on Monday, February 25, after the Ministry of Education announced they would no longer negotiation with unions that are still on strike. The strike is heading into its fifth week and most schools remain closed. FESCI staged a protest in Abidjan on February 26, which was dispersed by police officers firing tear gas.
Secondary and primary teachers are demanding better salaries, the payment of bonuses and housing fees, and class-free days on Wednesdays. Student protests erupted in Bouaké, Boundiali, Ferkessédougou, on February 4 to denounce the strike. On February 18, the secretary general of the National Coordination of Teachers Researchers of Côte d'Ivoire (CNEC) and his communication officer were arrested in Abidjan on charges of disturbing the public order, increasing tensions between the government and protesters.
Individuals across Côte d'Ivoire, particularly in Abidjan, are advised to monitor developments to the situation and avoid any related protests.
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