The leadership of the Edo State wing of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) yesterday issued a 21-day ultimatum to the state Governor Godwin Obaseki to fulfill his promises to pay all the outstanding entitlements and improved condition of services of teachers in the state.
The union, in a 10-point communique issued at the end of its enlarged meeting in Benin, the state capital, said that the 21-day ultimatum took effect from Tuesday, December 8, 2020. The communique dated December 8, 2020, was signed by the state Chairman of NUT, Pius Okhueliegbe and the Assistant Secretary General, Moni Mike Itua and three others, respectively. Moni, however, decried the seemingly nonchalant attitude of Edo State Government to genuinely address the union’s age-long demands, saying the ultimatum had become imperative.
According to him, SWECin- session in its December 8, 2020, enlarged meeting deliberated on issues of education, teachers’ welfare, conditions of service, entitlements and disciplinary matters in Edo State, as well as the actions and inactions of the state government and some of its managers of education. Moni stated: “During the painstaking deliberations, SWEC-in-session noted with utmost dismay, the seemingly nonchalant attitude of the state government to genuinely address the union’s age-long demands and appeals of the union on matters that are of rights.”
“Specifically, it was very glaring that the demands and appeals made, both diplomatically and through collective bargaining processes in the past by the union were still not attended to by the government.
“The SWEC-in-session also carried out an appraisal of the high handedness and reckless use of official powers on primary school headteachers and teachers by Edo SUBEB and its officials in the state vis-a-vis the happening in Esan North-East Local Government Area between the Acting Education Secretary of the LGA and members of the union.” Moni, therefore, listed some of the demands to include the payment of 2013 to 2015 promotion arrears of teachers in Oredo, Oehionnwon and Uhunmwode Local Government Areas, full implementation of the 30 per cent Special Allowance for teachers in the schools for physically challenged children and payment of all arrears.
The union also demanded for the reinforcement of the payment of primary school teachers monthly salaries, on or before the 27th day of every month, as already directed by the state governor. Others are payment of all the schools’ monthly subventions deducted and remitted to the coffers of SUBEB by the 18 local government councils from April 2020 till date to school heads for the administration of their schools.
Moni, who called on teachers in the state to remain calm, but mobilise themselves for indefinite strike, urged them to wait for further directives from the union at the expiration of the ultimatum issued to the state government.