Governor Obaseki: Edo to accord top priority to teachers’ welfare

Sensing the negative reactions that greeted his recent meeting with some leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to allegedly dissolve the leadership of the party from the ward to the state level in order to accommodate his loyalists who came from the All Progressives Congress (APC), the Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, has reportedly beaten a retreat.

Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo, on Tuesday, assured that his administration would prioritise the welfare of teachers in the state, as they were the moulders and ‘indispensable wheel in the engine of nation building’.

Obaseki gave the assurance while addressing teachers on the occasion of the 2021 World teacher’s Day celebration under the theme: “Teachers at the heart of education recovery”.

“As a state, the most important thing on our agenda is education, it’s about our people, the first thing the any good government will do for its people is to give them good quality education.

“The teachers are at the core of our educational system. We proved it with Edo Basic Education Sector Transformation (EdoBEST) programme, if the teachers do not accept it, we won’t have seen the type of transformation in our educational sector.

“We need you to keep helping us drive this process, that is why I am here to demand more from you, knowing you as I know you now, I have no doubt that you will respond. The list of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), in the past five years, was almost endless.

“Today we are not talking about teachers promotion again, now we are about people who didn’t get promotion even before we came into office, so if we were able to promote people since 2016, it means that we believe in it, those who were affected since 2014 to 2015 we have to sit down and look at it.

“For those teachers that retired in August 2021, it is only fair that they are paid their full salary, in all your requests, there is nothing difficult there that we cannot do, this is how I want our relationship to be.

“Your lives means a lot to us, now there is trouble in Nigeria, we need to come together to help save this country,” the governor said.

He further assured the teachers that he was going to appoint a commissioner for education that would hit the ground running, for the state’s educational system.

Earlier, in an address of welcome, the state Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), Mr Pius Okhueleigbe, commended governor Obaseki for settling the 2016 to 2019 promotion arrears to affected teachers.

He, however, called on the governor to give consideration to the recruitment of teachers, payment of the 2013 to 2015 promotion arrears to teachers in Oredo, Orhionmwon and Uhunmwode Local Government Areas of the state, in addition to the appointment of primary school headteachers, among other issues.

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