Academic activities were on Wednesday paralysed in public primary and secondary schools in Bayelsa State following the ongoing strike by the state chapter of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) over outstanding salaries.
It would be recalled that primary school teachers are being owed eight months salary arrears while secondary school teachers’ salary arrears are four months.
There was full compliance with the directive from the national headquarters of NUT to the state chapter as teachers stayed away from classrooms in all the public schools visited within the state capital and its environs.
Newsmen, who visited St. Mathias Primary School and St. Jude Secondary School, Amarata, reported that the schools were deserted and under locks.
John Toinpere, chairman of Bayelsa wing of NUT, had said on Tuesday that the directive followed the expiration of the 30-day ultimatum given by the National Executive Council (NEC) of the union.
He said the NEC of NUT directed all chapters being owed salary arrears to embark on indefinite strike from January 8.
“The lingering issues prompting the industrial action range from non-payment of seven and half months to primary school teachers, and four and half months salary arrears to secondary schools teachers.
“Also non-augmentation of salaries of primary school teachers, acute shortage of teachers and schools, inadequate instructional materials and none promotion of teachers since 2013.
“Non-implementation of promotion from 2015 till date, non-payment of N18,000 minimum wage arrears to teachers in the state, among others.
“And until the salary arrears are paid completely to both the primary and secondary school teachers, we will not resume work,” he said.