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Teachers of the United Muslim Association Secondary School (UMASS) led by senior teacher Joseph French have stated that the reopening of school will not fall through if salaries owed them is not paid in time. They reported that five colleagues of theirs have been employed since February and have not been paid ever since. The teachers said that they replaced other teachers who left the school but they have been neglected by the government, adding that similar situations exist in all other schools in Freetown and may end up cropping into uncontrollable problems in the educational sector in the country.
The expectation according to the aggrieved teachers is that they should have been paid in the first three months of their service at the school but that the government for no good reason held unto their monies almost forever.
Alhassan Sesay another unpaid teacher explained that they are family heads and bread winners but that the government has been callous enough to starve them for such a long time even though their services had been used for such a long time. We have gone through all the correct procedures and channels but authorities it seems are not interested in our plight; a plight which they themselves have meted out on us. We have taken up the matter with the Sierra Leone Teachers Union (SLTU) but no effort was made by the Union to intercede on our behalf. Some of their colleagues they said have died during the course of fighting for the payment of their salaries leaving behind family dependants that are not even certain of benefiting from the seat of the deceased teachers.
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