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NUT demands special salary structure for teachers

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Members of Nigeria Union of Teachers at 2019 worker’s Day. PHOTO: Timothy Adeogodiran/OTU/NAN

• Govt Plans Annual Retention Benefits For Rural Teachers
• Gbajabiamila Wants Better Deal For Teachers
• Abiodun Reinstates Two Teachers Sacked By Amosun

The Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) wants the Federal Government to approve a special salary structure for teachers so as to address the peculiarities of the profession, and in line with present economic realities.

This is as the Federal Government said that plans were afoot to provide allowances and initiate annual retention benefits for teachers in order to attract them to rural communities.

The National President of Nigeria Union of Teachers, Mohammed Nasir Idris, who spoke yesterday, at the 2019 celebration, with the theme, “Young Teachers: The Future of the Profession,” urged the Federal Government to urgently pay teachers of the 104 federal government colleges their 27.5 per cent enhanced professional allowances, noting that the payment would further motivate affected teachers to strive towards optimum performance and productivity.

Idris said: “It is our belief that a special salary structure for teachers would address the peculiarities of the teaching profession and give the profession its identity and status.

“We hereby make our humble submission that the proposal for a uniform Teachers Salary Structure (TSS) for all professional teachers in the country be given due attention and consideration.

President Muhammadu Buhari who was represented by the Attorney General of the Federation, Justice Abubakar Malami said the Federal Government would collaborate with the states with a view to providing incentives to teachers, especially in the rural areas to encourage young talents to join the teaching profession.

“It has been stated that teachers are one of the most influential forces for equity, access and quality in education, this administration places much emphasis on human capital development,” Buhari said.

He added: “We shall give more attention to training and re-training of teachers in order to enhance their capacities for effective service delivery.”

The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu said the theme of this year’s event progressively addressed some of the fundamental issues affecting teachers in particular and education in general in the country.

Represented by the Minister of State, Mr. Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, Adamu said there was need to revitalise the sector in order for it to create maximum impact.

He noted that revitalising the sector had given rise to the development of the Ministerial Strategic Plan, adding that the process was on course.

“Besides strengthening institutional framework in the educational system, a number of steps have been taken to increase access, which is the increase in the number of tertiary institutions…The numbers of these universities is an improvement over what it used to be

Adamu added: “Let us bear in mind that central to expanding access to these institutions are the young teachers who lecture in them, hence the urgent need to invest in young teachers.

He commended the Teachers’ Registration Council in its pursuit of teachers’ professionalism through registration and licensing all aimed at strengthening and improving teacher quality.

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila called for improved welfare package for teachers in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Lanre Lasisi.

Gbajabiamila said with the tremendous task of teaching future leaders, Nigerian teachers deserve the best from governments at all levels, as well as other well-meaning Nigerians.

He said the 9th National Assembly would ensure that the welfare of Nigerian teachers is well taken care of through adequate legislation and relevant resolutions.

The Speaker encouraged young Nigerians to take up teaching as it is the only profession that can mould leaders of tomorrow in different ways.

“Today, I join millions of Nigerians to commemorate this great day, the World Teachers’ Day. I salute the determination, diligence and dedication of the Nigerian teacher. But for the teacher, we all may not have been moulded to become what we have become today.

“I therefore call for concerted efforts to better the lives of the Nigerian teachers. We all have the responsibility to make our teachers happy, and I make bold to say that the 9th National Assembly, especially the House of Representatives, would champion the course of the Nigerian teachers.

“Working closely with the Executive arm of government, I believe in the next four years, we will put more smiles on the faces of the Nigerian teachers.

The Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, yesterday, approved the immediate reinstatement of two teachers sacked by the immediate past governor of the state, Senator Ibikunle Amosun.

Governor Abiodun who gave the approval, while speaking at the 2019 World Teachers’ Day celebration, said the decision was in line with his administration’s resolve to be just and fair to all.

The affected teachers, Dare Ilekoya and Olusanjo Majekodunmi were dismissed from service under Amosun’s administration over various allegations.

Ilekoya, the former Chairman of the Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT), was sacked along side 14 others for allegedly engaging in political activities and insulting the government of Amosun, during the 2016 World Teachers’ Day celebration.

Majekodunmi, a teacher with Mayflower school, Ikenne, was sacked in 2015, for allegedly setting an “offensive” English language question for the senior secondary school students of the state.

The dismissal of the teachers was later converted to compulsory retirement.

In reinstating the two officers, Abiodun said: “I approve the immediate reinstatement of Messrs. Olusanjo Majekodunmi and Oludare Ilekoya back to service from their compulsory retirement over the 2015 English Language examination question, and 2016 World Teachers’ Day celebration respectively.

“This gesture is not only to encourage our teachers. It is dictated by natural justice, and it is the right thing to do. We believe in the adage that to err is human and to forgive is divine.

“I wish to reiterate that this administration’s commitment to the principles of equity, fairness, justice, and inclusiveness is neither a vote-catching phrase, nor a populist sound bite.  Besides, I urge all our public servants to observe professional ethos and avoid any conduct that is not in tandem with public service rules at all times.

“It is my hope that this gesture will be reciprocated with increased commitment to duty and that appropriate lessons have been learnt”, Governor Abiodun said.

The state Chairman of the Academic Staff Union of Secondary Schools (ASUSS), Comrade Akeem Lasisi, in his speech urged Governor Abiodun to declare state of emergency in the state’s education sector “for the purpose of overhauling the sector on all fronts.”

Lasisi also appealed to the Governor to prioritise the welfare of teachers in the state by initiating car and housing loan facilities and also resuscitate teachers’ peculiar allowance, among others.


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