The Kaduna State chapter of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) on Thursday backed the state government’s decision to sack 233 teachers alleged to have been working with fake certificates.
The Chairman, Mr Ibrahim Dalhatu told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Kaduna that the union would not defend any teacher with fake certificates.
“As far as NUT is concerned, we will not defend them if the allegation of tendering fake certificates is true.
“We have instructed the affected teachers that if any of them have a genuine certificate and his or her name is on the list, they should submit the certificate to us.
“We will follow up with Kaduna State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) to rectify the issue,’’ he said.
On the competency test for public primary school teachers, the NUT chairman said that the union’s decision not to participate in the test had not changed.
According to him, only the Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria has the mandate to test and certify a professional teacher and not any state government agency.
“We will not go for any test. If the Kaduna SUBEB wants to assess the performance of our members, it should follow them to the class and assess them while they are teaching pupils,’’ he said.
The NUT National Executive Council had on Nov. 18 directed its members in Kaduna State not to participate in the competency test organised by the state government.
The Deputy National President of the union, Mr Kelvin Nwankwo, who gave the directive, insisted that teachers’ competence had been proved by various accredited universities and colleges of education.
He stressed that the teachers were also tested before they were hired.
According to him, the NUT affirms and relies on the provisions of Section 1(d) of the Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN) Act 2004, which made provisions for the regulation and control of the teaching profession.
“As teachers who belong to a professional body, registered and licensed, we shall only subject ourselves to any professional recommendation issued by our Regulatory Council, and to no other body,’’ Nwankwo said.
NAN reports that the list of the affected teachers provided by the Kaduna SUBEB shows that 210 out of the 233 affected teachers claimed to have obtained their certificates at the National Teachers Institute, Kaduna.
Kaduna SUBEB’s Executive Chairman, Mr Tijjani Abdullahi, had announced earlier on Thursday that the board would sack 233 primary school teachers for allegedly presenting fake certificates.
Abdullahi said the board would forward the files of affected teachers to the Ministry of Justice for prosecution.
The SUBEB boss also disclosed that the board would conduct competency test for primary school teachers as part of continued assessment of their capacity to ensure quality teaching.