Resumption Of ?Bayelsa Public Schools Delight Students | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Resumption Of ?Bayelsa Public Schools Delight Students

NUT, Teachers Unions Shower N5.2m Cash, Gifts On Retirees, recession
Posted: Oct 19, 2016 at 5:08 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

Igoniko Oduma

Yenagoa – Pupils in public primary and secondary schools in Bayelsa State have expressed joy over the resumption of school for the 2016/2017 academic session following the suspension of strike by the state wing of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT).

The Kalama Toinpre-led NUT had last weekend suspended its four-week-old strike and directed all teachers to return to classroom on Monday 17 October 2016 after the Governor Seriake Dickson-led administration bowed to pressure and paid two months’ half salaries of arrears demanded by the union, among other demands.

Our correspondent who visited some public primary and secondary schools in Yenagoa and its environs on Wednesday observed that teachers and students were interacting in their classes, although the bushy surroundings of the schools were still being cleared.

“I’m happy that school has finally resumed and we are learning again”, ThankGod Izibeya, a JSS One student at Community Secondary School, Opolo, said in an interview.

Favour Micah, a primary six pupil said: “During the long holidays and the strike, home was very boring. I have seen some of my friends as we returned to school but not all of them, and we are still cleaning our school compound”.

A female teacher who pleaded anonymity said she was delighted to resume work, and advised the state government not to create the conditions that would force teachers to go on strike.

“Nobody can work on an empty stomach. When you are not paid your salary, how do you go to work? So, the government should make sure it does not owe teachers’ salaries”, she said.

Kalama Toinpre, the NUT chairman, said that teachers across the state have resumed work, stressing that the decision to return to classroom was communicated to all NUT members.

He said: “We have secured some agreements from the state government in writing that at the end of this month, October, two months half salaries of the outstanding be cleared in addition to the two months half salaries already paid.

“Having secured the commitment of the state government to commence clearing the backlog, we shifted grounds and decided to suspend the strike and return to work from Monday”.

Markson Fefegha, the state Commissioner for Education, said in a statement in Yenagoa that a team of inspectors from the Ministry of Education would be sent to monitor compliance by teachers.

According to him, the NUT directive makes it mandatory for all teaching and non-teaching staff to resume work from Monday 17 October 2016, warning that “all staff who willfully absent themselves from duty would be declared as ghost workers and replaced immediately”.

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