THE lingering crisis between the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) and the Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola-led administration has got to a level that the state government is hell-bent at ensuring that the striking teachers pay dearly for their insubordination to the state government.
In its recent effort to undermine the threat of the teachers, holding it to ransom over their resolve to abandon the classroom until the new salary issue is resolved, the government has written to the state directorate of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) to assign over 90 percent of the corps members to its schools.
Investigations revealed that the state government believed that another way to defeat the stubborn teachers is to flood the schools with corps members, providing them with adequate securities to enable them open the school doors again, thereby forcing the teachers to negotiate based on whatever the government is willing to offer.
OSUN DEFENDER gathered that the Peoples Democratic Party-led government in the state resolved on the move, after its several attempts to bring back the striking members of the NUT failed.
The government had directed the Teaching Service Commission to open an attendance register for the teachers, a move described as an empty threat by the leadership of the NUT, while the government also threatens to deduct the salary of the members based on no work, no pay policy.
The state NUT had shunned a High Court order in the state restraining it from embarking on industrial action to join its counterparts from four other South-West states protesting the non-implementation of the new salary scale promised them by the government.
Reacting on the issue, an executive member of the state NUT, who preferred anonymity, told OSUN DEFENDER that the union is aware of the government’s plan, saying the union is battle-ready against all plans of the Oyinlola-led government.
The executive member, however, blamed its leadership at the state for the present travails the union has found itself, adding that if they had not been involved in a romance with the state government, their position would have been given prompt attention before getting to this stage.
According to the source, the government is taking the union for a ride, even when it is responsible for its being in power in the first place, the source however, added that the selfish and greedy attitudes of its leadership is responsible for the trouble the government is putting it through.
Then, the source revealed that the NUT leadership would do everything to ensure that the welfare of its members is adequately protected.
Also speaking on the issue, Pa Wale Azeez, a retired public school principal disclosed that the present travail would teach the union leadership a good lesson that no government is worth to be trusted whole-heartedly.
He however, warned the government on the consequences of flooding schools with graduates that are not properly trained to teach in our public schools, saying it should rather go to the roundtable with the teachers.
Speaking further, he stated that the way and manner the Governor spoke on a public television and radio programme about the crisis between the government and the NUT was not helping matters.
Pa Azeez, added that with about two or three weeks to the Senior Secondary Schools Leaving Certificate examinations, the government ought to have been involved in critical discussion with the union like it was done in Lagos and Ogun States rather than resolving to media war and recruiting corps members into its public schools.