Kaduna Teachers threaten strike over planned sack of 21,780
Teachers under the aegis of Kaduna State chapter of Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) have threatened to go on strike if the state goes ahead with plans to sack 21,780 primary school teachers said to have failed primary-four-level competency tests.
Chairman of the union Audu Amba said the test was not professionally conducted, insisting that the only competent body that can test teachers’ competency is the Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN).
“The teachers were not tested based on professionalism or based on what they studied. Teachers have resolved to embark on a show down should government go ahead with its plan,” he stressed.
Governor Nasir El-Rufai had earlier expressed its dissatisfaction over the performance of the teachers that failed the competency test; saying the state was currently shopping for 25,000 new teachers as part of plans to restore quality of education.
The State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) has also issued notice calling for application from suitably qualified persons to apply for employment.
Applicants have already been thronging the board for submission of hand written application letter and their credentials.
Due to the increasing number of applicants thronging the board, an official of the board addressed the crowd, telling them to submit to the education secretary at the local government secretariat nearest to them to avoid long time of waiting to submit at the board.
According to the NUT chair, relieving such a huge number of teachers of their job would set the state 20 years backward; saying, even though the NUT supports the government’s desire to improve on the quality of education in Nigeria, it does not support the modality employed by the state government in conducting the competency test.
“It will do us a great harm if 21,780 teachers are relieved of their jobs because government will be setting us 20 years backward. As such, we cannot guarantee the industrial harmony that exists in the state, should the state government go ahead with its threat to sack the teachers. We had a discussion with the state government to let it understand that teaching profession is not like other professions or industrial machines that you can open and close at will,” he said while he reiterated the resolve of the union to embark on industrial action