called on the federal government to hand over the management of primary
schools to state governments.
The union’s demand came after the federal government introduced a
local government autonomy plan that gave local government
administrations control over primary school education.
NUT Secretary Solomon Igbelowowa spoke on Friday during a peaceful
protest at the Alagbaka Government Office in Akure, the state capital.
SaharaReporters gathered that the union members walked from their
state secretariat along Oda Road to the governor’s office while carrying
banners and chanting solidarity and anti-government songs.
Mr. Igbelowowa explained that the primary education system in the
country has witnessed poor funding, underdevelopment and total neglect
since it has been under the control of the local government system.
He said that the union could not afford to continue to tie the fate
of the teachers and pupils under the primary education sector to the
local government councils.
Mr. Igbelowowa added that the local government administrations have
over the years showed they lack the financial capacity and commitment
to shoulder the responsibility of managing primary education.
“It is on the above premises that we feel most comfortable to call
for the handover of the payment of salaries of primary school teachers
to state governments as a way of pulling the dwindling primary school
system out of the woods,” the union leader said.
to states from the federation account be reviewed upwards in favor of
the states to guarantee uninterrupted primary education in the country.
“Alternatively, we demand that salaries of primary school teachers be
paid through the universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) from the
first line charge from federation account.”
He added that primary school teachers are owed several months’ worth
of salaries due to the inability of the local governments to provide
needed funds for the primary school staff.
The NUT secretary stated that such untoward development also portends
a great danger for the public primary education system and the future
of the mass of underdeveloped children in the country.
“It is against this backdrop that we wish to reaffirm our position
and call that the payment of salaries of primary school teachers be
taken over by the state governments in order to prevent the education
sector from imminent collapse,” Mr. Igbelowowa added.
Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, who received the protesters, called for
the devolution of powers among the three tiers of government in the
Mr. Akeredolu said the federal government should devolve more power
to the state in order to manage its own sectors and resources.
“The state government must be allowed to be in control and manage its own resources,” he said.
A SaharaReporters correspondent later reported that the NUT union
leaders presented a position paper on their agitations to the governor.