Teryima Andrew, Jos
About 21, 000 public primary school teachers, employed by the Plateau state government on Friday protested neglect by successive administration in the state.
The teachers protested to the deputy governor’s office, speaker of the state assembly, and the Gbong Gwom, Jos Jacob Buba.
“It is painful that this all important stratum of our educational system has suffered untold neglect and underfunding without adequate motivation for teachers,” they said.
Addressing Journalists at it state secretariat, shortly after the mass protest, state chairman of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) Gunshing Yarings, noted with dismay that teachers in the state have not benefited from the 18000 minimum wage since it inception more than eight years, and their retirees suffer more hardship.
“The awful experience of teachers between 1990 and 1994 when primary education was left in the hands of local government councils will continue to hunt the education industry for a long time to come.”
The teachers sought for autonomy from local government administration, according to the NUT chairman, teachers in the state have been marginalized by local government council’s administration.
The NUT boss stressed further that “the renewed agitation for the local government autonomy has made it imperative for the Nigeria Union of Teachers to sensitize stakeholders and the general public on the danger inherent in handing over the affairs of primary education to respective local government councils, should autonomy of local government be granted.”
According to him, poor funding of the educational sector was the cause, Mr. Yarings, pointed out those Nigerian politicians does not accord need respect to public primary school teachers.
“Payment of primary school teacher’s salaries and allowances as well as retirement benefits to retirees was not a priority list of politicians in the local government councils.”