The Senate has urged the Federal Government to enter into negotiations with state governments for the payment of salary arrears owed teachers across the country.
This followed a motion by the Chairman, Committee on Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Sen. Dino Melaye, at plenary on Tuesday.
The senate also urged the federal, states and local governments to begin the implementation of a priority expenditure scheme that put the payment of teachers’ salaries in the same range as security.
Leading debate on the motion, Melaye expressed worry over non-payment of teachers across the country, describing it as unacceptable.
He decried the non-utilisation of the bailout fund given to the states by the Federal Government and warned against the resultant effect of a nationwide teachers strike.
Supporting the motion, Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, said that teachers should be paid as at and when due.
“We have to change our perception that teachers reward is in heaven; we need to discourage this attitude.
“We should rise to condemn the continuous owing of teachers. Why should teachers’ salary be the last to be paid,’’ he said.
Sen. Jeremiah Useni (PDP Plateau) stressed the need to make teachers’ salaries a priority of government, adding that teachers were the engine room of development in any country and should not be played with.
In his remarks, President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki, urged the Federal Government to urgently address the lingering salary problem of teachers across the country.