Teachers demanding more pay to face higher food prices entered the third day of a nationwide strike. The government has called their demands “illegal” and “unjustified”, because the “high cost of living is a general problem that does not concern only [the teachers’ union]”, said Employment Minister Fatime Tchombi. Primary school teacher Aubin Golmbaye told IRIN his USD200 monthly salary was not enough to feed his family. “In addition to food I need to pay for the house, medical care, school fees - even if I spend USD4 a day on food, what would I have left for our other needs, and transport to get to work?” The Government has estimated that poor rainfall in 2009 reduced cereal production by 31 percent reduction compared to previous years. The shortage could keep cereal prices, which are higher than they have been for five years, at current levels through March, according to the US-funded early warning group, FEWS NET. (IRIN)

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