The Chairman, National Union of Teachers, Lagos Chapter, Mr. Samson Idowu, has said teachers will go on an indefinite strike come September 21, if the Lagos State Government fails to fully implement the 27.5 per cent increase in salary in line with the new Teachers Salary Scale.
He made this known at the inauguration and distribution of the first batch of NUT customised laptops on e-teaching/learning process to teachers on Thursday.
While speaking to journalists, Idowu said that the state government had only paid nine per cent out of the 27.5 per cent.
“We had a meeting with the Lagos State Government on Wednesday and they said that the remaining balance would be included in the 2013 budget. This should not be so. Why do teachers have to wait so long. We are not going to relent on our proposed strike until the Lagos State Government hearkens to our demand. We want this money paid this year. This money has been due since 2008.
“Come September 24, the Lagos State government will see the other side of teachers. We will come in full force. No going back; enough is enough,” he said.
Speaking on the customised laptop project, Idowu said that the main aim of the project is to boost knowledge of teachers.
He said, “As implementers of educational policies, it is our occupation to add value to the efforts of the government to ensure significant improvement in the overall quality of education in Lagos State. NUT is also committed to solidifying the massive investments the state government is putting into the infrastructural growth of schools by empowering our members for e-teaching.
“The computer is fast replacing the lesson notes and electronic teaching is relegating the manual method to the background all over the world. We must therefore be ICT-compliant to be worthy of our professional calling.
“The system we are about to inaugurate today is the first of its kind in NUT all over Nigeria. It features the school curriculum and customised for the educational enterprise. I want to appeal to our members to embrace this innovation with open arms and plead with the government and our school authorities to create an enabling environment for the introduction of this system.”
The chairman noted that teachers would be trained and re-trained on how to maximise the system and its features.
He added that the Quality Assurance Department of the state would ensure that teachers are fully utilising the system for the right purpose.
The representative of the Commissioner for Education, the Tutor-General for Lagos State Education District 1, Mrs. Victoria Peregrino, lauded NUT for its initiative to empower teachers.
“This is a great move by the Lagos State government. The teaching profession is one that needs so much assistance and support. I enjoin teachers to embrace change. The world is ICT-driven, so therefore we must follow and not remain stagnant,” she said.
Meanwhile, the Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor on Education, Mr. Fatai Olukoga, when asked to react to the proposed strike by teachers, said he had no comment.
A teacher, Mrs Abas Omobolanle, urged the Lagos State government to accede to the union’s demand by paying the 27.5 per cent salary increment for teachers.