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12 teachers reportedly arrested for rejecting low salaries in Rumbek

12 teachers reportedly arrested for rejecting low salaries in Rumbek
South-Sudan-teacher marking the book of his student. Photo by UNICEF South Sudan/Ryeng

At least 12 teachers have allegedly been arrested for rejecting their two months’ salaries over lack of increment in Lakes state.

Teachers in 7 Counties had reportedly rejected the payment based on the old salary structure of the government.

The move resulted in the detention of 12 teachers in Rumbek town.

In August 2021, President Salva Kiir order for the immediate increment of salaries of civil servants by 100 percent. The new salary structure would allow a school headteacher to receive 22,763 South Sudanese Pounds, while a deputy and a senior teacher would receive 20,078 SSP for Grade 7 and 8 respectively.

One of the teachers, Makur Nyot told Mingkaman 100 FM that they rejected the payment because it does not reflect their current salary scale as stipulated by the Ministry of Labor.

“We have so many months without receiving the money, and when it came in the form of arrears every time, we have rejected money for January and February 2022. All the schools under Rumbek Center, Rumek north, and Yirol have refused to receive their salaries,” he stated.

Another teacher, Emmanuel Mabor Mapuor said he refused the payment after the state failed to implement their increment. 

He said they submitted a petition to the State parliament demanding new payment.

Mr. Makur said the state Minister of Education ordered security officers to arrest them at Panda hotel in Rumbek after they rejected the money.

But the State Minister of Education has denied the arrest of the teachers.

“No teachers were arrested, and I didn’t call anybody in my office. That is a big lie,” Nelson Makoi stated.

He urged all the teachers to receive their salaries based on old payment structure.

He admitted that the teachers’ salary has been increased by 140%, but 40% is retained as chalk allowance for teachers in the teaching field. He said none of the teachers has rejected the salaries because the ministry has also received two months’ wages with allowances.