Teachers urge states to fund primary education, pay salaries

Posted by News Express | 6 October 2015 | 3,339 times

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday outlined three key mechanisms that would be used in meeting the needs of teachers.

Buhari said this in Abuja while commending teachers for their relentless effort in developing the nation on the occasion of the World Teachers Day celebration.

Represented by Mr. Babachir Lawal, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Buhari said: “This administration is going to focus on three key mechanisms which are first ensuring security for teachers, students and the school environment.

“The second is a better retirement age for teachers and the establishment of National Education Labour Relations Council.”

In her address, Mrs. Hindatu Abdullahi, Acting Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, reiterated the Federal Government's commitment to the development of teachers’ capacity.

Abdullahi said that the theme for 2015 Teachers Day celebration gave credence to the fact that teachers and the teaching profession were indispensable in nation building.

She said that for the country’s development to be sustained, teachers must be empowered and strengthened, adding that they were at the centre of every education system.

Earlier, the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) urged state governments to take responsibility for the funding of primary education and payment of teachers’ salaries, to ensure education stability in the country.

Mr. Michael Olukoya, the NUT National President, made the call at the celebration of the 2015 World Teachers Day with theme: ‘Empowering Teachers, Building Sustainable Societies,’ on Monday in Abuja.

Olukoya stated that primary school teachers were being owed salaries for months due to the inability of states to fund primary education.

He added that the Federal Government had been funding it through its Universal Basic Education programme.

“The NUT acknowledges the role played by the federal and other tiers of government in funding basic education through the UBE programme.

“However, the union regrets the trend where no tier of government could be held liable for the poor funding of primary schools in the country.

“Today, primary school teachers are being owed salaries for months due to the inability of local government councils to shoulder the responsibility they were saddled with in the past.

“We, therefore, wish to restate our demand that it should be the responsibility of the state governments to fund primary education including the payment of teachers’ salary because that is the only way primary school education in Nigeria can remain stable.”

He said that the World Teachers Day was set aside by UNESCO to honour and celebrate teachers across the globe for their immense contributions to humanity and national development.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that members of NUT from different states marched at the Eagles Square, Abuja, to commemorate the day.

The participating states included, Abia, Adamawa, Anambra, Benue, Kogi, Edo, Ekiti, Bayelsa, Borno, Cross River, Delta, Gombe, Katsina including members of staff of the Federal Ministry of Education, among others. (NAN)

•Photo shows Teachers celebrating ‘2015 World Teachers Day’.

Source: News Express

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