Borno State Government Under Prof Zulum Pays Teachers N7,500 As Salary

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The Borno State Government under Prof Babagana Zulum, pays primary school teachers in the southern part of the state a paltry N7500 and headmasters N10,000 as monthly salary.

Southern Borno comprises eight Local Governments Areas which are; Askira-Uba, Biu, Chibok, Damboa, Gwoza, Hawul, Kwaya-Kusar and Shani.

Minority ribes, other than Kanuri speaking also live in the south of the state.


Some primary school teachers in Chibok, Askira-Uba, Gwoza and Kwaya-Kusar told SaharaReporters how they were forced to survive on a paltry sum of N7500 to N15000 as monthly pay cheque.


“I’m earning N10,000 as a headmaster of over 10 years in one of the schools here in Askira-Uba,” said a teacher who spoke to Sahara Reporters on condition of anonymity.

For another teacher in Chibok, “I’m an NCE (National Certificate in Education) holder; I started on N15,000 eight years ago and till date I’m paid the same N15,000.”

“Like me, majority of primary school teachers in southern Borno are paid N7500. And it doesn’t matter your qualification,” another teacher from Gwoza corroborated.



It is the same tale of frustration from teachers in Kwaya-Kusar, as one of them said, “Yes it’s true, my salary and all of us here is N7500. When you complain, the Education Secretary will always refer you to the state SUBEB in Maiduguri.”



“I had cause to go to the board in Maiduguri, all they told me was that our salary is this meagre because our local government is having zero allocation; whatever that means, nobody could explain to me,” another teacher said.



To verify why the salary disparity, SaharaReporters contacted the Borno State Commissioner of Education, Lawan Abba Wakilbe who denied the allegation that southern Borno teachers were paid meagre salary.



Wakilbe, who admitted that there were teachers on monthly take home pay that is as low as N7000. however argued that the disparity happened before the coming of the current Babagana Umara Zulum’s era.



He said, “The general minimum wage that was first adopted deferred per local government, not the current N30,000; that’s the old N18,000 minimum wage.



“So local governments that had so much staff adopted like 40 to 50 percent minimum wage. Local governments that have minimal staff adopted 100 percent minimum wage.

“That disparity happened before our time. When we came, we had like 21,000 teachers on LEA (Local Education Authority) payroll. So the first thing we did was a verification, out of which 7000 or so had fake certificates and they’re currently laid off.

“Then in 2019 the governor organised a needs assessment on education, health and water. In education we discovered a problem with the quality of teachers, because since the abolition of Teachers Colleges, there’s no direct formal means of training teachers; the Education Secretaries replace teachers indiscriminately.

“One qualifed teacher retires, they bring in six, seven small boys and put them there. We conducted a competency test across board, when we conducted the test we inherited about 17,000 teachers or there about. After the verification based on primary three standard, only 6000 of them had 60 marks and above. So those qualified were paid minimum wage across board.

“You know we called them to centers for exams and University of Maiduguri consult was asked to conduct that exam, not even the state government. When that happened only 6000 got 60 marks and above. The professors were telling me that any body with marks bellow 90 has failed; but we brought it (cut off mark) down to 60.

“Then we identified 7000 that are trainable, that with training they could be teachers. We had a situation where NCE holders could not write NCE test, graduates could not fill bio-data form. It was that bad! What will they go and do in a classroom?

“So the 7000 that need further training, by next week we’re taking 1200 to Waka-Biu, 800 to Bama, the rest would be trained here. Then we’ve identified the younger ones, 1000 of them to use six semesters, two years NCE course; so we’re training the 7000.”

“That leaves the category that are making trouble. The ideal thing we could have done is to discard them but because of the human sympathy the governor had, he said he’s not going to terminate anybody; they should be allowed to earn a living before we train these our teachers,” he said.
(Sahara Reporters)

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