Teachers in Gulu Query Inconsistent Salary Payments

A section of secondary school teachers in Gulu district have raised concerns over the inconsistent payment of their salaries this financial year 2022/23. The teachers say since August last year, they have been missing their salaries without getting clear information despite being on the government payroll.

Caesar Okot, a teacher at Awach Secondary School in Awach town council says that he began experiencing irregularity in the payment of his salary in July. He notes that whereas it was a general problem with other civil servants, his case became unique after going for three months until October without receiving the salary.

According to Okot, although he was paid the arrears, his October salary wasn’t paid adding that he was again shocked to miss his December salary despite being told his name is still reflected on the payroll.

He says the inconsistency in salary payment has negatively affected his performance at school and livelihood at home, a move that forced him to join the boda boda business.

Agnes Aciro, another affected teacher also at Awach Secondary school says she has been inconsistently receiving her salary since the 2021/22 financial year. She notes that to date, she has an outstanding arrear for May last year and casts doubt on when the money will be paid since it entered a new financial year.

Aciro says the inconsistency has affected her output at school and general life at home.

“I feel so bad about me and my colleague, and being the same people missing salary, I am so demoralized. If I am to have a good business at the moment, I would leave teaching because I don’t feel appreciated,” says Aciro.

Okot however suspects foul play in the irregularity of salary payment, arguing that he has consistently been a victim out of hundreds of civil servants in the district.

Robinson Obot, the Senior District Inspector of Schools, however, noted that they hadn’t received complaints from the affected teachers arguing that issues of salaries are beyond his office.

“Some of the issues are bigger than us, we can’t tell why the salaries are not coming regularly,” Obot told URN in an interview. He however noted that the irregularity could be a result of errors in the payment system.

Ismail Ochengel, the Chief Administrative Officer Gulu says although none of the affected teachers has registered the complaint in his office, the irregularity in salary payment of civil servants is not new.

Ochengel says a number of times, names of employees went missing from the government payroll without clear information but they are later reinstated at the district.

He however dismissed any suspected foul play in the irregular payment of the affected teachers and encouraged them to make formal complaints about their woes for a better solution.

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