Last Updated on: 20th January 2023, 12:34 am
Over 5 teachers in Gulu district are frustrated after systems errors have denied them getting salaried. They have now made alarms to the ministry of education and sports for what they term as “over constant salary missing”.
The affected teachers claim that the system errors have denied them getting millions of shillings (salary arrears).
More than five secondary schools in Gulu district among them Awach secondary school (with 2 teachers), Lukome secondary school (1 teacher), Paicho secondary school (1 teacher) and Patiko secondary school (2 staff and one teacher) and one non-teaching staff (a bursar) are affected.
Agnese Aciro, a history teacher at Awach secondary school says in a phone interview that she has missed one-month salary amounting to shs730, 000. She has been making complaints to the office of the CAO and human resources more than 9 times. According to her, no action has been taken up to date.
Aciro added that she has been constantly missing salary which has made her lose morale in the profession. “The ministry of education is segregating art teachers toward salary increments to science teachers.
This has made many teachers run out to do other businesses like bodaboda. It is affecting the learning in Uganda,” she added.
Another teacher from Awach secondary school, Ceaser Okot said he is demanding over shs 1.5 million in unpaid salaries for November and December last year. He told this digital publication that they have been struggling to get it.
“I’ve been moving up and down to get support from the district authority but no answer,” he told our Gulu City-based corresponded, Lil Okot.
Caesar further said the issue has come to “uncontrollable attention” because it has made it difficult to support his family. The efforts they (teachers) are doing to serve the nation, he added the ministry of education is putting them down and not appreciating their efforts.
Daphne Oyella, the deputy head-teacher of Patiko secondary school said the school has over 19 teaching staff and 5 non-teaching staff.
She confirmed that the school has been battling with two issues, among a teacher and bursar’s arrears for three months.
She said the total sum is up to shs1.3 million to be paid. She also noted that network failure is contributing to delays of payment which sometimes make blame put on both the head teacher and administrators.
Oyella, however, blamed the ministry of education and sports for discrimination against teachers in their salary dispensations. “This has become a rampant challenge contributing to big heads of science teachers not respecting the others, it is difficult to manage them yet the amount of commitments and efforts are all equal in performing.”
She explained the difference in salary earning among the arts and science teachers: a Degree science teacher is getting shs4millions per month; a Diploma science teacher now earns shs2million while an art teacher with a Degree in arts gets shs700, 000; a Diploma arts teacher shs400, 000 – 500,000.
According to her, the salary variance is a “sign of mockery to art teachers” and it is making teachers not perform well.
However, Robinson Obot, the Gulu District Senior Inspector of Schools blamed all the head teachers of schools.
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“They are the ones failing because the ministry has a head teacher and the engines of the school are not coordinated to the administrators to handle such matters in time,” Obot said.
Obot added that this issue of system errors always affects newly recruited staff and sometimes entering their names are delayed by the human resources department.
“This is a common thing happening not only in Gulu district but allover Uganda. Also note that Gulu was the first to receive payments,” the schools’ inspector said, adding that some issues are beyond their control and it’s the ministry to address.
The CAO of Gulu district Ochengel Ismael has said they are trying to engage with the ministry of public service to find what could be the problem, promising the challenges will be addressed. “It’s a common thing to the systems to jump off some months; it is not affecting only teachers but other civil servants are facing the same problem.”
Ochengel further appealed to all the teachers who have missed salaries to draw the attention of their CAO to handle it and put back the name into the system’s payroll.
He advised teachers to remain calm and not to panic and be frustrated. “It is general in nature,” the district chief concluded.