Approximately 100 primary and secondary school teachers employed by the Rivers State Government have staged a protest at the Government House in Port Harcourt. The teachers expressed dissatisfaction over not receiving the N100,000 Christmas bonus that Governor Siminalayi Fubara approved for civil servants.
The protesting teachers highlighted that, unlike other state civil servants who received their bonuses with their December 2023 salaries, they were inexplicably left out of the bonus disbursement.
Governor Fubara had initially announced the bonus for each civil servant before the Christmas holidays, a decision that was initially met with widespread joy among workers, including members of the Nigeria Labour Congress and the Trade Union Congress in the state.
The aggrieved teachers gathered outside the Government House, urging the state government to address the situation promptly and ensure they receive the promised bonus.
One of the teachers, identified as Oke, expressed the disappointment, stating, “We were so happy when we heard that the governor approved a N100,000 Christmas bonus for all civil servants. So we assumed that the last Christmas was going to be very great for us.
“But as we speak today, this is January, a few of us, as you can see, have not received the Christmas bonus.
“On Monday, schools will be resuming. Most of us traveled and have returned. We have exhausted all we have. So we are here this morning to register our complaints to our dear loving governor to help us talk to those who are holding our Christmas bonus.
“Our N100,000 Christmas bonus should be released because it will go a long way in cushioning the effect of the hardship, especially in this January.”
Other teachers who spoke accused their banks and the state Universal Basic Education Board of failing to address the matter.
An official of the government addressed the protesting teachers, commending them for their peaceful disposition and assuring them that their complaints would be looked into.