World Teachers Day: Teachers Urge’s Benue Government To Prioritize Welfare, Clear 8 Months Salary Arrears

World Teachers Day: Teachers Urge’s Benue Government To Prioritize Welfare, Clear 8 Months Salary Arrears

Henry Ibya, Makurdi

Teachers in Benue State have argued that though the success of education in the state and country was dependent on their shoulders, teachers could not give their best to students working with empty stomachs.

Speaking separately during an interactive session held at the Benue teachers house in Makurdi, to mark the world teacher’s day celebration, a cross section of teachers including Mr. Celestine Luga, Tsafa Iorfa and Cosmos Ujo, observed that for the lost glory of education to be restored, Government at both the state and Federal level must first listen to the cries of teachers which primarily is their welfare arguing that no teacher can give his or her best when their own children are sent out of school for non payment of school fees.

They further contended that no teacher could equally give students their best when they are hungry, recalling that some teachers in Benue State, had only received their salaries last in 2017 for 2 months.

The teachers likened the situation where Government threaten teachers to put in their best without considering their welfare to a situation where a farmer who did not fertilize his farm in order to have enough yields as expected was expecting much yields without doing the needful, and also stating that an engine of a car cannot move when it is grounded, thereby, insisting that for the system to work effectively, Government must also perform it’s role. 

The stakeholders identify non promotion of teachers, lack of prompt payment of salaries, herdsmen attacks and the effect of COVID-19, as an impediment to the smooth operation of education in the state and the country emphasizing that for the last glory of education to be redeemed, the welfare of the teacher must be adequately taken care of by the government of the day to enable teachers go back happily to the classroom to impact quality knowledge to the students.

The educational expert’s further lamented that most teachers in the state have met untimely death’s either through herdsmen attacks or the inability of such teachers to settle their medical bills stressing that the death of a teacher is not only painful because he is a colleague to those who are teachers but because of the inestimable value of a teacher to the entire educational system of a country and appealed to all forms of government to take the welfare of teachers seriously.

In a good will massage, The National President, Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), Dr. Nasir Idris, represented by the vice Chairman Benue NUT, comrade Nathaniel Ogbonike, speaking on this year’s  World Teachers Day on the theme: Teacher’s at The Heart of Education Recovery, lamented the devastating impact of covid-19 on the educational sector and the attendant challenges teacher’s had faced to ensure effective delivery of education to all learner’s around the world describing the topic as apt.

The NUT president commended the Federal Government for the sustenance of the presidents teacher’s and schools excellence award and governor’s for their various contributions to the smooth observance of this global event in their respective States, stressing that the president award will promote excellence in service among teachers, administrators and schools in the country.

He also called on the Federal Government to implement teachers new salary structure and the extension of retirement year’s from 60 to 65, to make it the same with other civil servants.

In his welcome address Chairman, Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), Benue Council, comrade Levi Akuma, appealed to the Benue State Government to expedite action on the implementation of 30,000.00 minimum wage, clear outstanding salary arrears as well as other entitlements owed teachers to boost their moral to perform optimally.

The chairman who lamented the death of many of his members as a result herdsmen attacks called on the state government to provide adequate security for members of the Union working in crises prone areas to guarantee safety of teachers and the students.

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