The new salary increments proposed by the federal government for the public servants has raised concern as some teachers are worried that it may not necessarily be the panacea to addressing the high cost of living in the country. Meanwhile some teachers stressed that the proposed salary increase will not solve the problems of the high cost of living unless the government address the major challenging issue such as accommodation, health, and training, among others.
Meanwhile, Mercy Nnokam, a staff of the Rivers State ministry of education lauds the federal government for the proposed increment which she believes will help ease the effects of the high cost of living minimally. She explained that the lack of motivation has also caused some teachers to migrate abroad. Nnokam laments teachers’ poor condition in Nigeria which she said is affecting the zeal and morals of many professional teachers, hence, many of them would abandon their duties for side-hustles to enable them to meet family demands.
Government should provide more incentives for the teachers.
Nnokam noted that poor remunerations and conditions of service given to teachers in Nigeria also affect the teacher’s zeal. She advocated that the federal government should provide more incentive for the teachers such as housing loans, health insurance, training, and retraining teachers among others to bring them up to the global standard. She also asserts that the government should give room for training and retraining. Also, Omosebi Abiola, a public secondary school teacher in Lagos State explains that the main issue is the point of implementation with action and not just by saying and hopefully Lagos State will follow suit.
According to Abiola most times the salary increments are based on basic salary alone, and for those in the middle and lower levels, meaning that nothing in the face of the value of the naira. However, she reiterated that the tax will automatically increase and that it will not be charged on basic salary alone but including all other allowances, which will eventually render the increment useless. Furthermore, Ukamaka Ajayi, a teacher with the Lagos State ministry of education chose to wait and see as the state government is yet to make known its position on that.
Government will soon make a pronouncement on salary increase.
He said the Lagos State had made the same promise some time ago with no action seen. Benedicta Eboh, a teacher in a private school sees the move as a good one, but only if the increase will be enough to meet up with the current prices of goods. Moreover, Glory Akinsola, a teacher in a mission school would have loved to see a situation whereby the government increments can also reflect on private school owners and staff.
She went on to say, the federal government’s budget has never been a parameter for private teachers’ salaries, though a laudable development. Akinsola explains that private school teachers only hope for better development per time as federal government endeavors can’t reach them. On the other hand, Chris Ngige, the minister of labour and employment disclosed recently that the federal government will soon make a pronouncement on salary increases for civil and public servants to cushion the effect of rising inflation.
Committee in charge has commenced a review on salary.
Ngige disclosed that the presidential committee on salaries has already commenced a review and is expected to come up with salary adjustments in 2023. The commission is mandated by the Act establishing them to fix salaries, wages, and emoluments in not only the public service. He noted that the government will make further announcements on the matter as time goes on. Issues on the teachers’ welfare remain a recurring challenge in the country. Government needs to do more than just pronouncement to address the issue as teachers continue to show their concerns.