Bayelsa state primary and secondary schools are currently closed over the state government’s failure to settle seven months salary arrears of teachers.
The 2016/2017 academic year is yet to commence, three weeks after it should have started.
The public school teachers embarked on a strike at the end of the 2015/2016 long vacation which ended in the first week of September.
In a statement released on Monday, the Bayelsa chapter of Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) urged teachers to stay at home till their demands were met.
The union said the industrial action became necessary after the expiration of its 21-day ultimatum to the government on September 19.
In a statement signed by Kalaama Toinpre, the state chairman of NUT; Johnson Hector, the secretary, the union said it was unfortunate that the government reneged on the agreement reached in May to pay half salaries to its workers pending improvements in the state’s finances.
It said that the state government had only paid teachers their January salary in full and half salary in February, thereby leaving arrears of seven months. .
Meanwhile, Markson Fefegha, Bayelsa state commissioner for education, was quoted to have said the government meets regularly with the teachers to resolve the issues raised.
“We have been meeting with the executive of the Academic Staff Union of Secondary Schools, I have been explaining to them our efforts so far in meeting our salary obligations”, Fefegha said.
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