Akwa Ibom State Government has taken further steps to improve the welfare of teachers in its employ, with the payment of leave grants up to 2022, for those in public primary schools.
The Executive Chairman, State Universal Basic Education Board, SUBEB, Dr. Anietie Etuk broke the news today, when he received the Chairman of the State Wing of Nigeria Union of Teachers, NUT, Comrade Edet Emenyi and his executive on a courtesy visit to his office in Uyo.
Dr. Etuk,a former Speaker of the State House of Assembly, said the payment of leave grants in addition to the prompt payment of salaries, was a practical demonstration of government’s investment in education sector.
He called on primary school teachers, whom he described as the bedrock of the education system, to reciprocate government’s financial investment by showing passion and greater commitment to their duties.
The SUBEB Chairman explained that the meeting with Nigeria Union of Teachers was to partner the Union to address the challenges against the growth of public education.
Dr. Etuk also announced the constitution of three monitoring teams for the three senatorial districts of the State to go round schools and monitor the activities of teachers, saying there will be no business as usual in SUBEB, under his administration.
Also speaking, the Permanent Secretary of the Board, Mrs Abasiekeme Essien and Board Member Four in charge of School Services, Sir John Udo advised teachers against absent from duty and headteachers, imposition of levies to undermine government’s free and compulsory education policy, warning that defaulters will face the consequences.
Earlier in his address, the State Chairman of Nigeria Union of Teachers, Comrade Edet Emenyi conveyed the gratitude of teachers to the State Government for the payment of leave grants and promised that the union was ready to collaborate with government to restore public confidence in public education system.
Comrade Emenyi commended the Chairman of the State Universal Basic Education Board, Dr. Anietie Etuk for his passion for quality education, saying the meeting with NUT was a pointer that he is in SUBEB to make a difference, as one who knows the challenges of education sector and he is in a hurry to fix them.
The NUT assured of the support of teachers in the advancement of the system and called on government to improve funding of education through timely promotion of teachers, employment of new ones and payment of owed entitlements to motivate them to perform optimally.
He said Nigeria Union of Teachers was not against discipline of erring teachers, but that the punishment should be in accordance with Public Service Rules and the law.
In the NUT delegation were, the Deputy Chairman of the Union, Comrade Michael Udofia, Secretary, Comrade Sam Umoinyang, Assistant Secretary, Comrade Udeme Ebe, Treasurer, Comrade Clement Esenam, Chairman, Association of Primary School Head Teachers of Nigeria, Comrade Etim Mba, as well as the Director of Administration, Universal Basic Education Board, Mrs Mary Ekaete, that of Quality Assurance, Mr. Emmanuel Ituen and Director of School Services, Mrs MANDU Ekpenyong.