About 500 science teachers in Cross River on Tuesday staged a protest at the office of Governor Ben Ayade to demand reinstatement into service and payment of their September and October salaries.
The teachers, carrying placards, prevented movements in and out of the governor’s office.
Spokesperson of the group, Henry Abu, a teacher in Government Girls Secondary School, Biq-qua Town, Calabar, told NAN that 500 of them were allegedly delisted from the state government payroll in September.
Mr Abu said that the removal of their names from the payroll had caused untold hardship to families of the affected teachers in the state.
“It’s been two months now and we have not been paid. We have families to feed and we have to pay our children’s and ward school fees,” he said.
Also speaking, a teacher with Secondary Education Board, Itam Obono, said that the recruitment that brought them to service was done in 2015 by an Indian firm he called Educom.
Obono said that the former Governor of Cross River, Sen. Liyel Imoke, spent a lot of money in the recruitment process to ensure transparency and quality of teachers into the service.
In reaction, Chief Press Secretary to Mr Ayade, Christian Ita, told NAN in a telephone interview that the governor was doing a cleansing of the state payroll in other to delete ghost workers.
“Nobody has sacked them. Government has realised that because approval was given for employment in some areas, the people in charge resorted to over employment.
“In some cases where 200 persons were approved for employment, the people saddled with the responsibility recruited 700 staff. So, nobody has been sacked.
“Those whose employments were genuine have been given letters for re-validation of their employment. This means that those that were genuinely employed are to be restored back to the payroll,” he said.