It appears like the Coalition for Democratic Change led government headache is far from being over amidst the current economic hardship facing the Country.
According to the Secretary General of the National Teachers Association of Liberia Samuel Y. Johnson, the problems of Liberian Teachers now are increasing under the CDC-led administration unlike the previous government.
Mr. Johnson speaking to KMTV made specific reference to the failure of the government to pay his members’ salaries dated back as three, four, five and six months respectively something he noted is troubling for the Country and the sector in general.
Moreover, he stressed that the alleged failure of government to pay eight months’ arrears of the Secure Risk Insurance Company for teacher’s medical benefits which was legally agreed upon is also a great problem affecting his members.
“Non-Treatment of Our Members is worrisome”, Johnson added.
He explained that you can easily find a substitute for hunger but not for health, the result is death something he fears may happen to his members if nothing practically is done by government to address said issue by the government.
Currently he pointed out that the NTAL leadership is under immense pressure because all of its membership threat to stage a go-slow, strike and protest action respectively very soon in demand of their delay salaries and heath benefits, among others.
The NTAL Secretary General indicated that the leadership of the Teachers’ body is talking to its members to exercise patience with government but was quick to add that “You can’t keep a hungry man without finding solutions to his problems, Johnson said.
Mr. Johnson wants national government especially president George Weah lift up to his commitment of addressing the concerns as well as plights of teachers of Liberia.
He called for more dialogue and round table discussions to find tangible solutions to problems affecting the growth process of the sector, this he added was done in the past in both Ganta, Nimba County and Booker T. Washington Institute (BWI) facility in Kakata, Margibi County.
The NTAL spokesman said it is now time that Government prioritize building the capacity of the Nation’s promising population, the young people that constitute 65% of the Country’s population.
“If we do not solidly build our nation’s foundation (Youth), we will end up importing foreigners, something that will not be good for an independent nation like Liberia”, he warned.
He re-emphasized the need to increase the national budget on education by 20% in order to meet and or address some of the challenges facing the sector and to as well meet up with international bench mark which will subsequently see more support to the sector if such is fully implemented to the letter.
He said the absence of building a solid educational foundation is detrimental to the Liberia’s growth process as such he wants all hands on desk to help holistically address the key issue of national concern.
Johnson disclosed that National Teachers Association of Liberia comprising over 15,000 members along with the coalition of education defenders will Monday host a major meeting amidst some of their concerns with the focus of a major next course of action which he noted is been demanded upon by his members, “Go-Slow-Action” until all their demands are met, something he noted will be their last option after exerting all efforts.