The Nigeria Union of Teachers on Wednesday said the economic recession in the country is now having negative effects on the welfare and performance of teachers in Niger State.
The state chairman of the NUT, Comrade Ibrahim Umar, on the occasion of this year’s World Teachers’ Day in Minna, said the recession is also negatively affecting the smooth running of the school system and the entire education sector.
“It is evident that teachers at both primary and post-primary schools in the state are being owed salaries for months and in some cases, they are paid at random and on percentage”.
“The implication of this and its attendant consequences are greatly affecting the morale of our esteemed members and, indeed, the development of the education sector.”
Umar also lamented that the present challenges of irregular payment of teachers’ salaries and allowances in the state is capable of undermining the desired change in the education system.
“ It is very demoralising , unfair and unjust to allow teachers, particularly at the primary school level, to stay for two to four months without salary.
“Teachers have now been compelled to become beggars and most neglected species within the family of civil service, a position they don’t deserve,” he added.
The NUT chairman therefore asked the Niger State government to address all these problems by ensuring regular payment of salaries and allowances and introducing hardship allowances for teachers in rural areas.
In an address, the state Head of Service, Sule Yabagi, acknowledged the fact that the morale of teachers in the state had dropped considerably; but he assured that the administration would improve teachers’ condition.
He commended the NUT in the state for maintaining industrial peace and solicited for more cooperation with government, adding that the “economic downturn will soon be over, and will translate into better life for all workers in the state.”
The speech of the National President of the NUT, Comrade Michael Alogba, was read to the large gathering of teachers that attended the ceremony.
The theme for this year’s ceremony is, “Valuing teachers, improving their status.”