If Highly Paid Parliamentarians are Crying, What about Poorly Paid Teachers Ecetera!
By a Disgruntled Teacher (07/11/18)
Our members of parliament who should be representing the interests of the voters are now selfishly campaigning to enrich themselves more.
Right now, over paid Sierra Leone parliamentarians are demanding salary increase from 20,000,000 Leones a month to 37,000,000 Leones while the likes of teachers continue to languish in man-made poverty.
The almighty Speaker of the House and his Deputy currently receive a monthly take home pay a whooping Le 70,000,000 and Le 50,000,000 respectively.
Not to mention the MPs call for hefty increments in allowances ranging from medical, rent, transportation etc. This means that the least member of parliament will take home Le 37,000,000.
While the poor teachers and the likes languish with a meagre Le 500,000 monthly salary. This is an insult to valuable teachers who fight day and night to ensure that they improve the human resource of this country.
This beggars the question. Are the members of parliament there to represent themselves only, or are they not voted in to make laws for the benefits of the general good of all?
The SLPP government of President Julius Maada Bio chose free education as its flagship project but pays less attention to the livelihood of the drivers and agents of this project.
The bulk of the work in transmitting this project rests on the shoulders of the teachers. Many traps have been set to humiliate teachers who are often found guilty of trying to sabotage the project but nothing is being done to improve the lives of teachers to make this project a success.
To tell you the truth, there is no union or body that advocates on teachers' behalf. The union that knifes a huge junk of the teachers' salaries is dumb on such important issue. No wonder we consider such unions more political rather than apolitical.
The Sierra Leone Teachers Union is being used as a breeding ground to assume political positions. People use the union to gain political recognition. Current Minister of Education Alpha Timbo was once head of SLTU. But how politics can change people!
The MPs are sensible enough to put politics aside and advocate for their improvement in salaries. While other Sierra Leone public and private servants who contribute meaningfully to developing the nation are left to feed on crumbs. Very shameful.
If the SLTU is not competent enough to do the advocacy thing for the benefits of all teachers, I suggest its dissolution with immediate effect is the best option to spare us the embarrassment. A word for the wise is sufficient.