Teachers’ New Salary Scale: NUT Debunks Excuses by State Government
Written by freshadmin3 on October 6, 2021
The NUT has dismissed states’ excuses, saying only governors against teachers won’t honour new scale
State governments on Tuesday, October 5, 2021,hinged the implementation of the new salary scale for teachers on the availability of funds, saying the Federal Government could not dictate to them.
Government officials in Enugu, Ekiti, Gombe, Cross River, Benue and Ogun states, in separate interviews with newsmen, said they would make teachers understand the shortage of funds the states were facing.
But the Nigeria Union of Teachers General Secretary Dr Mike Ike-Ene, in his response, dismissed the excuse given by the states and warned against playing politics with education.
He said the union would engage the states using everything in “its entire arsenal.”
Also on Tuesday, October 5, the Federal Government in Abuja announced fresh incentives for teachers during the celebration of 2021 World Teachers’ Day.
The incentives include payment of stipends for undergraduates of education and automatic employment for graduate teachers.
The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), had during the 2020 World Teachers’ Day unfolded some incentives for teachers.
They include a new salary scale and raising teachers’ retirement age from 60 to 65 years.
On Thursday, September 30, at a symposium organised by the Ministry of Education, the Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, said teachers would begin to enjoy the new salary structure promised by the President as from January 2022.
But on Tuesday, October 5,the Enugu State Government said that it would only implement the new teachers’ salary scale if its resources could sustain it.
Also, the Gombe State Commissioner for Education, Dauda Batari, also said the implementation of new salary scale in 2022 would depend on the improvement in the state’s resources.
On his part, the Ekiti State Information Commissioner, Akinbowale Omole, said the state government would respond to the issue according to its laws and resources available to it.
Omole said, “One matter has become very clear in recent times in the sense that we are gradually adjusting to the fact that we run a federation where every government, at its own level, must work within the laws and the resources available to it”.
The commissioner, who said every state would respond based on its capability, stated, “On our own part, I can assure you that we will look into it and do it in accordance with our own laws and financial capability. We won’t behave as if we do not know that something is happening in the federation concerning teachers.
But the Cross River State Government said the Federal Government had yet to begin the implementation of the new salary scale.
Meanwhile, the Benue State Government says it is ready to pay new salary structure for teachers anytime Federal Government increases the funds to the state.
The Ogun State Government said it could not meet all the demands of the teachers including new teachers salary scale due to paucity of fund.
The governor, Dapo Abiodun in his speech stated,” Let me say most sincerely to you. I have always kept in focus and prioritised the welfare of Ogun State workforce in general and that of the teachers in particular.
“I acknowledge that most of your demands are legitimate, even when the problems predate this administration. I wish we had all the funds, there would not be one item left on your list of demands that would not be immediately addressed.
“But we are constrained with paucity of funds. Indeed, our steady and deliberate approach to resolution of workers related issues is dictated by the reality of available funds rather than the strength of our commitment.”
Dismissing the states’ claims, NUT Secretary-General, Ike-Ene, said some of them were playing politics with education.
He said states also complained of the shortage of funds whenever teachers’ issues came up.
He said, “When we get to the bridge we will cross it. If you have a good mind, you will want to do it, but those who are anti-teachers can continue to say they cannot pay the teacher’s salary scale but if there is a will there is a way. Every month, no state has ever complained of not getting its monthly allocations. These people are playing politics with education because when things have to do with teachers, they will say funds are not available.”