The Nigerian Union of Teachers has warned that it might declare an industrial action to protest the 12 state governments still owing teachers’ salaries.
The National President of the union, Michael Olukoya, said this on Thursday in Abuja.
Olukoya said the defaulting states, which include Abia, Bayelsa, Benue, Ekiti, Kwara, Ondo, Taraba, Delta, Kaduna, Osun, Nasarawa, Oyo and Kogi, owed teachers between one and 28 months’ salaries.
In a statement made available to our correspondent, the NUT helmsman gave the breakdown as follows: Abia State (Primary, five months, Secondary, seven months), Benue (Primary, 12 months), Nasarawa (Primary, 26 months, half salaries), Taraba (Primary, six months), Ondo (Primary, four months), Kwara (Primary, two months), Ekiti (Primary, nine months, secondary, five months), Kaduna (Primary, five months, secondary, five months), Delta (Primary, five months, secondary, five months), Osun (Primary and secondary, 28 months, half salaries), Oyo (Primary and secondary, one month) and Bayelsa (Primary, seven months, Secondary, three months).
Olukoya, said, “The leadership of the NUT wishes to express our displeasure over the continued non-payment of salaries and allowances due to primary and secondary school teachers in some states across the country, in spite of our previous call on all defaulting states to pay up the backlog of salaries and allowances owed teachers so as to galvanise effective academic activities in our schools.
“We shall embark on strike for two reasons: the non-payment of salaries and the decaying facilities in the schools. We call on the affected state governments to clear the arrears and ensure regular payment of teachers’ salaries without further delay.”
He said that teachers in Benue State would be exempted from the strike because of the prevailing insecurity situation in the state.
“They (teachers in Benue) will not join the nationwide strike until their case is debated at the national level,” Olukoya said.
The NUT President also condemned the sacking of over 21,000 primary school teachers in Kaduna State on account of their inability to score up to 75 per cent in a competency test that was conducted by the state government.
Olukoya, who urged the government to reconsider its decision, noted that only the Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria could conduct such a test.