Teachers from primary and secondary demonstration schools in Rivers State, alongside civil society organization Rivers, held a protest outside the Nigerian Bar Association conference venue on Monday at Yakubu Stadium Gowon of Port Harcourt.
The teachers are demanding payment for their five years’ salary.
The presence of Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike at the event may have prompted teachers to hold the protest at the NBA conference venue.
Some of the aggrieved teachers regretted that the state government ignored their plight despite a series of protests over the issue.
They used lawyers to convince the state government to obey the judgment of the appeals court which was favorable to them.
Also speaking on behalf of the protesters, the chairman of civil society organization Rivers, Enefa Georgewill, questioned the state government’s refusal to pay teachers’ salaries for about five years.
According to him, âthe office of governor of Rivers State is a creation of law and if a competent court has given an order, for God’s sake everyone must obey.
âYou said they collect the tuition fees so they should pay for themselves, but the question is; are they the vice-chancellor who controls the fund?
âWe have no problems with the governor, but we say the governor should do well to obey the court order in force.
“It’s not too much to ask for for teachers.”
The president of the state’s Ikwerre local government area, Samuel Nwanosike, who addressed the protesters, begged them to leave the arena and advised to hold a meeting with the police commissioner in the aim to solve the problem.
He denied, however, that the state government owed teachers, describing the teachers’ claims as a plot to tarnish the image of the state government in the presence of lawyers.
He said that âGovernor Nyesom Wike officially paid the salaries of even teachers he did not employ. “
The protesters then proceeded to the state police command headquarters where Police Commissioner CP Friday Eboka vowed to invite stakeholders at a later date for another meeting.