More than 40 disgruntled teachers stormed the office of the Arua Chief Administrative Officer on Monday afternoon protesting the delayed payment of their salaries. The teachers threatened to lay their tools, saying that they haven’t received any pay since this financial year started in July.
It took the intervention of the acting District Education Officer Henry Wadri, who quickly directed the teachers to converge in the board room to air out their grievances. Loyce Drijjaru, a teacher at Eruba primary school, said that they have been patient for far too long yet they are under a lot of pressure to teach despite their predicament.
Robert Guma, another affected teacher, said that the delayed payment of their salaries has taken a huge toll on the welfare of his family.
The acting District Education Officer Henry Wadri, acknowledged the problem and blamed it on anomalies that arose during the separation of payroll for the newly created administrative units that were carved out of the greater Arua District.
He said that the names of most of the affected teachers remained on the payroll of the former Greater Arua district thereby affecting the payment of their salaries. Wadri revealed that they have resolved to embark on a fresh verification exercise of teachers as one of the lasting solutions to the problem.
Addressing the affected teachers, the LC V Chairperson, Alfred Okuonzi, asked them to remain calm, saying that his executive is committed to addressing the issue. This is not the first time teachers in the Arua district are protesting over missing salaries.
In 2008, teachers from various places in the district stormed the streets of Arua town to protest the non-payment of their salaries. Similarly, In February 2014, hundreds of civil servants stormed the office of the Arua chief administration officer protesting the continued delay of their salaries.