600 teach­ers killed by Boko Haram – NUT

600 teach­ers killed by B/Haram

Daily Trust - - FRONT PAGE - By Chidimma C. Okeke & Ab­dul­la­teef Salau (Abuja), Ab­dul­lahi Anako (Dutse), Nabob Og­bonna (Abaka­liki), Dick­son S. Adama (Kaduna), Romoke W. Ah­mad (Ilorin), Ke­hinde Akinyemi (Abeokuta), Doyin Ade­busuyi (Ado Ek­iti), Abubakar Auwal (Sokoto), Habibu Umar Aminu

The World Teach­ers’ Day held an­nu­ally by teach­ers’ or­ga­ni­za­tions world­wide to mo­bi­lize sup­port for teach­ers and en­sure that the needs of fu­ture gen­er­a­tions are met, was marked through­out the coun­try yesterday with a call from Pres­i­dent Muham­madu Buhari for a fun­da­men­tal change in at­ti­tude, ori­en­ta­tion and be­hav­iour of teach­ers. This, the pres­i­dent noted, is to achieve greater value, ideal and prac­tices if gov­ern­ment’s ef­forts at im­prov­ing the stan­dard of teach­ing is to be suc­cess­ful.

The pres­i­dent’s charge was pre­sented by his rep­re­sen­ta­tive, the Sec­re­tary to the Gov­ern­ment of the Fed­er­a­tion (SGF) Engr. Babachir Lawal, in Abuja at a rally to mark the day which had the theme: “Em­pow­er­ing Teach­ers, Build­ing Sus­tain­able So­ci­eties.”

The pres­i­dent re­it­er­ated the com­mit­ment of his ad­min­is­tra­tion to strengthen and em­power ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tions in the coun­try.

The theme, ac­cord­ing to him, is apt and ex­plained the fact that so­ci­ety can only be sus­tained by em­pow­er­ing teach­ers and strength­en­ing the teach­ing pro­fes­sion.

He said a com­pre­hen­sive eth­i­cal frame­work was re­quired to re­de­fine what the new value, ideal and prac­tices should be.

The Na­tional Pres­i­dent, Nige­ria Union of Teach­ers, (NUT) Com­rade Michael Alogba Olukoya, in his re­marks, listed chal­lenges faced by teach­ers and drew the at­ten­tion of the pres­i­dent to crit­i­cal is­sues af­fect­ing the teach­ing pro­fes­sion and ed­u­ca­tion in the coun­try.

He de­cried the in­sur­gence which has af­fected many chil­dren and teach­ers.

Olukoya said over 600 teach­ers had fallen vic­tim of terror at­tacks in ad­di­tion to the over 19,000 who have been dis­placed and are suf­fer­ing great losses due to the ac­tiv­i­ties of in­sur­gents.

He re­gret­ted the trend where no tier of gov­ern­ment could be held li­able for poor fund­ing of pri­mary schools in the coun­try and de­manded that it should be the re­spon­si­bil­ity of the state gov­ern­ments to fund pri­mary ed­u­ca­tion, in­clud­ing pay­ment of teach­ers’ salaries in line with the Supreme Court judg­ment of 2002.

The union leader fur­ther de­manded that the re­tire­ment age of teach­ers in pri­mary and sec­ondary schools be raised to 65 years to in­crease teacher re­ten­tion rate.

Ral­lies were held in other parts of the coun­try, in­clud­ing Ji­gawa, where the state chair­man of the NUT, Al­haji Us­man Ya’u, ap­pealed to the gov­ern­ment to re­cruit more Science and English lan­guage teach­ers, say­ing the sub­jects are keys to de­vel­op­ment.

The NUT chair­man in Ebonyi, Com­rade Nweke Joseph, urged the state gov­ern­ment to off­set the ar­rears of an­nual leave al­lowances for 2013, 2014 and 2015, say­ing dis­crep­an­cies and ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties among other things char­ac­ter­ize the pay­ment of teacher’s salaries in the state.

Teach­ers in Kaduna State promised to tackle quacks who have in­fil­trated the pro­fes­sion ac­cord­ing to the state chair­man, Com­rade Audu Ti­tus Amba, who com­mended Gover­nor Nasir El-Ru­fai for mov­ing ed­u­ca­tion to the next level in the state.

In Kwara State, the NUT chair­man, Com­rade Musa Abubakar, said the union would ve­he­mently re­sist any at­tempt to place pri­mary schools un­der lo­cal gov­ern­ment author­i­ties and urged the fed­eral gov­ern­ment to es­tab­lish the “long over­due” Sec­ondary Schools Com­mis­sion for ef­fec­tive and ef­fi­cient ad­min­is­tra­tion.

Else­where in Ogun State, Gover­nor Ibikunle Amo­sun de­scribed the in­volve­ment of teach­ers in the coun­try’s change mantra as cru­cial, say­ing ef­fec­tive teach­ing im­pacts pos­i­tively on learn­ers.

He said his gov­ern­ment was about to re­cruit 600 teach­ing and non-teach­ing staff for the new Model Sec­ondary Schools. Ha­keem Lawal, the pres­i­dent, Aca­demic Staff Union of Sec­ondary Schools (ASUSS) and Dare Ilekoya, the state NUT chair­man, both com­mended the gover­nor for teach­ers’ wel­fare pro­grammes.

In Ek­iti, Gover­nor Ay­o­dele Fayose gave a new Kia Soul Car to the new Head­mas­ter-Gen­eral, Mrs Tal­abi Rachael, while Mrs Akindele Mary Olayinka, the best pri­mary school teacher and Mr Ade­ola Ife, the best sec­ondary school teacher, got sim­i­lar gifts for their out­stand­ing con­tri­bu­tions to the de­vel­op­ment of ed­u­ca­tion in the state.

Chair­man of the NUT in Sokoto State, Com­rade Chika Maidamma, said there was need for the state gov­ern­ment to in­crease teach­ers’ years of ser­vice from 35 to 60 and urged Gover­nor Aminu Tam­buwal to im­prove on the gi­ant strides made in the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor by his pre­de­ces­sors, while com­plain­ing about de­lays in the pay­ment of pri­mary school teach­ers’ salaries by banks.

In Katsina, teach­ers de­manded the restora­tion of their al­lowances which were stopped by the for­mer ad­min­is­tra­tion. The 27.5 per­cent in­crease which was stopped when the min­i­mum wage was im­ple­mented has caused se­ri­ous dis­af­fec­tion be­tween teach­ers and gov­ern­ment, Daily Trust gath­ered.

Most teach­ers in Oyo State shunned ac­tiv­i­ties to mark the day in protest against months of un­paid salaries and ar­rears of pen­sions and gra­tu­ities of re­tirees. The Lekan Salami Sports Com­plex, Adamas­ingba, Ibadan venue of the rally had a very scanty at­ten­dance, but the chair­man of the NLC, Mr. Wa­heed Olo­jede who is also the state sec­re­tary of the NUT, urged the teach­ers not to be dis­en­chanted as the state gov­ern­ment would use the bail-out fund to ad­dress the prob­lem.

Teach­ers in Imo marked the day with a firm prom­ise of prompt pay­ment of salaries from Gover­nor Rochas Oko­rocha who ex­pressed de­light with them for keep­ing faith with his ad­min­is­tra­tion in its quest to erad­i­cate poverty and il­lit­er­acy through the pro­vi­sion of qual­i­ta­tive and free ed­u­ca­tion. He said his love for teach­ers had made them the envy of other civil ser­vants and vowed that not even the present eco­nomic sit­u­a­tion in the coun­try which had dras­ti­cally re­duced the state’s al­lo­ca­tion can sep­a­rate him from teach­ers. State NUT chair­man, Sir Napoleon Aniche, reaf­firmed the “to­tal” sup­port, loy­alty and com­mit­ment of the teach­ers to the res­cue mis­sion of the gov­ern­ment, say­ing teach­ers had not got it bet­ter with any past ad­min­is­tra­tion. Teach­ers in Ondo State com­mended Pres­i­dent Muham­madu Buhari for re­leas­ing the bailout funds for work­ers’ salaries.

Photo Macjohn Akande

Borno State teach­ers dur­ing the world teach­ers' day cel­e­bra­tion in Abuja yesterday.

Mem­ber, Nige­rian As­so­ciate of Or­tho­don­tists (NAO), Dr Ye­tunde Olu­dare, ad­dress­ing Stu­dents of Com­mand Day Sec­ondary School, Abuja, at the launch of the as­so­ci­a­tion in Abuja yesterday. Photo: NAN

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