Even if the Government of Uganda ever realized the 30% salary demand made by the teachers, the truth is that they will remain operating in the shadows of the teachers who served the country in the 60's up to the mid-seventies. It is unfortunate that the NRM Government has upset the whole system such that people who previously were highly regarded by Government before NRM are currently eating grass, hence the continued brain drain. It is not likely that NRM will ever manage to reverse the bad climate it has created for most professionals, they simply have no morale given the pay which get more meaningless by the day, as people whose source of money is unclear but are booming and buying land. It is sad.
William Kituuka Kiwanuka
TEACHERS DEMAND 30% SALARY INCREASE
By Mercy Nalugo (email the author)
Posted Wednesday, July 20 2011 at 18:17
Teachers in the country from both primary and secondary schools are expected in Parliament on Thursday morning to present their petition demanding that the government increases their salaries by at least 30 per cent.
The teachers under the Uganda National Teachers Union (UNATO) will present their petition in the Parliamentary Social Services committee. The committee chairperson, Mr Sam Lyomoki announced on Wednesday that they shall listen to the petitioners’ concerns and put them before the sector ministers during the on-going review of the sector’s policy statements.
The Social Services committee is charged with scrutinizing the budget for the ministry of education but the salary increment for the teachers does not feature anywhere in the policy statements.
In their petition that is before the Social Services committee, the teachers are expected to note that their meagre salaries cannot enable them to cope with the ever increasing standard of living.
“All we need is the 30 percent increment for teachers across the board so that we come up with the most practical strategy,” reads the petition in part signed by the UNATU General Secretary,Ms Teopista Birungi.
A primary teacher on government pay-roll earns Shs 200,000 a month while those in private schools are usually paid as low as Shs 60,000 a month.
With the 30percent increment, a primary school teacher would earn an extra Shs 60,000.
During the last financial year budget, government announced a 30percent increment for those teachers in hard-to reach regions.
Teachers have however threatened to strike if their salaries are not increased.
The Ministry of Education Under Secretary, Mr Aggrey Kibenge recently said that the teachers demand however cannot be met this financial year as there is no increment in the budget.
Last year government gave teachers a 30 per cent pay rise which was subjected to taxes.
The teachers have overtime complained about the poor pay and stressed the need to have their salaries increased to enable them meet their needs given the increasing standard of living.
The teachers complained in the petition that despite the worsening economic condition in the country, their Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) has not been operationalised to date which is the basis for improving on their welfare.