2 Jun 2004

Thousands of PNG teachers still waiting to be paid

10:26 am on 2 June 2004

The Assistant secretary of the Teachers Association in Papua New Guinea says over 5-thousand teachers have not been paid since the start of the school year.

Gordon Kavop's comments came after the Western Highlands branch announced their members would stay away from classrooms if 219 teachers had not received pay by June the 8th.

Mr Kavop says the Association is trying to correct the situation by dealing with the Education Department but he says they are not getting much feedback.

He says the Association has discouraged teachers from taking the matter into their own hands but does understand their position.

"We do not expect teachers to provide the services that they are supposed to be rendering to the nation. If the government speaks of quality education it has to look at the issues that affect teachers. How can they expect teachers to perform their duties when they are not properly looked after?"

Gordon Kavop says the Education Department has blamed the non-payment on a new payroll system funded by Australian aid.