By: Wale Ibrahim, Lokoja
The outgoing Chairman of Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), Kogi State Chapter, Comrade Suleiman Ndalaye Abdullahi has called on Kogi State Government to prioritize the welfare of teachers in the state.
Abdullahi who disclosed this while delivering his address at the 6th quadrennial state delegate conference in Lokoja, the State Capital
He noted that basic education has suffered long neglect by successive governments in Kogi State and lamented that the teacher have been at the receiving end of the neglect.
He warned that any attempt to develop basic education in the state without adequate consideration for the welfare of teachers is doomed to fail.
The Chairman however commended Governor Yahaya Bello for listening to the plea of organized labour in the state by granting pardon to all cases relating to the last staff verification exercise put before him.
“However, we request that the release and payments to all cases pardoned be fast-tracked to ameliorate the suffering of our members.
“Your excellency, I want to state that the GYB Model Primary Schools you flagged off today will be complemented by teachers. Look into our plight for we know you can do it. We still have issues of minimum wage arrears, unimplemented promotions, unimplemented incremental steps, unpaid leave grants for years unattended to”, he said.
Governor Bello, while declaring the conference open, assured teachers in Kogi state that he is committed to ensuring that teachers in the state enjoy the fruits of their labour.
The governor informed the delegates that he has directed the 21 local government administrators to make teachers’ salaries front-line charge. He commended the resilience of basic education teachers.
The guest speaker, Dr. Isa Aminu from Federal University of Lokoja called on Federal and state governments to have a rethink in budgetary allocation for education.
He recommended that 15% budgetary allocation for education in the first instance from year 2018 and graduate to 26% in yer 2030 in line with the UNESCO recommendation.