Teachers in all government owned primary schools in Ekiti State, yesterday, began a two-day warning strike over unpaid salaries and entitlements, resulting in the closure of schools across the 16 local government councils.
The teachers are demanding payment of the 2014 leave bonus and the outstanding September, 2014 salary which ex-Governor Kayode Fayemi owed them.
It would be recalled that teachers were largely instrumental to Governor Ayodele Fayose’s victory in the June 21, 2014 poll.
Commenting on the strike action which crippled all primary schools in the state, the Ekiti State Chairman, Nigeria Union of Teachers, NUT, Comrade Samuel Akosile, said it was quite disturbing that the allowances under contention were not captured in the bailout released by the federal government to Ekiti recently.
Akosile said the agitation for the payment of the entitlements which other workers had received, has been on for some time, regretting that the Fayose-led government has not treated their demands with fairness.
The NUT boss clarified that the fact that secondary school teachers did not join the strike doesn’t connote that there is division, saying their rank is intact and that there is no crack within the union.
He added that primary school teachers and local government workers collect their salaries from the same source, alleging that Fayemi decided to leave out the September, 2014 salary to punish them for their role during the last governorship poll.
“This agitation has been on but I pleaded with my people to embrace dialogue first. The governor said he would pay with the bailout but it seems as if we are running out of patience and we have no option than to embark on this strike to press home our demands.
“Though, the government is making efforts to pay, but it has to look inwards for an alternative if the bailout is not forthcoming because this payment is long overdue.
“Government is a continuum and this situation is a product of the actions and inactions of Fayemi’s government which this administration inherited and it has to accede to it properly,” he said.
Akosile denied the allegation from the opposition All Progressives Congress, APC, that Fayose was using security agencies to hound them over the proposed strike, saying nothing of such happened to any of their members.


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