The Nigeria Union of Teachers, NUT, has condemned some state governments for what they say, is the systematic exclusion of teachers in the payment of salaries from the 2015 federal bailout funds.
In a statement issued in Abuja and signed by NUT Secretary General, Obong Obong, the group rejected what it called the segregationist treatment of teachers.
“The National leadership of the Union strongly rejects the segregational treatment meted out to teachers by some governors in favour of other workers in their various states.
We the NUT will not stand aloof and watch the continuous maltreatment and gross insensitivity towards teachers plights by some State governments,” the statement said.
The NUT ” recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari upon assumption of office, offered bailout funds to State governments to enable them offset backlog of salaries arrears owed workers. It is equally on record that teachers were the most affected having been owed months of salaries. Therefore it is unacceptable and highly callous for State governments not to place teachers on priority list at the commencement of salary payment from the Federal government bailout funds.
We demand that all State governments still owing teachers arrears of salaries should urgently offset same and ensure that teachers are given priority attention whenever such funds are given to state governments in future. Our demand is for equity and fairness in the management of the bailout funds meant for workers salaries.
The teachers said they were ” indeed alarmed by the ICPC report that State governments mismanaged and in some cases diverted their bailout funds to other areas different from what they were meant for. It is therefore our view that such State governments be adequately sanctioned to check such untoward behavior in future. They should also be forced to source funds and pay their teachers and indeed all workers in line with the spirit and intent of the bailout funds. “
At this critical stage of our national challenges, State governments should desist from actions that will further cause avoidable suffering of teachers and great strain on our educational system, but work to advance their social, economic and political wellbeing for the sake of industrial harmony in the education sector and the development of our Nation,” the union concluded.