The Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT) yesterday called on the Federal and State Governments to take over payments of Primary School teacher’s salaries from the Local Government Councils.
State chapter of the Union marched to the State Assembly in protest over nonpayment of Primary School teachers by Governments across the Country.
According to them the move was to save Primary Schools which they said is the foundation of learning from total collapse, adding that the present arrangement was not working especially for the masses who are paying heavily to train their wards in private schools.
The nation wide protest which is being carried out across States of the Federation followed a directive of the National body of the Union to create awareness on the challenges facing Primary Education in Nigeria.
Acting Chairman of the Union in Taraba State, Comrade Garba Yusuf while addressing the Speaker and Members of the State Assembly, said they were not totally against Local Government autonomy being canvassed by NULGE, but that Local Government Councils in the Country lack the capacity to fund Primary Schools.
“A clause should be provided to increase federation allocation to States to enable them fund Primary Schools and pay salaries without problems.
“Money for Primary School teacher’s salaries should be deducted from the source during federation account meetings and sent to Universal Basic Education Commission for funding and payment of teachers’ salaries in the Country,” the union said.
The teachers who said they don’t want a repeat of the experience of the 1980s where Primary School teachers went without salaries for over 12 months, appealed to the Assembly as elected representatives of the people to intervene and save the total collapse of public schools.
Responding, Speaker Abel Peter Diah said the house shared the same sympathy with the teachers and assured them that the house will ensure a balance interest for both NUT and NULGE before a final decision will be taken on Local Government autonomy.