Explain teachers’ missing funds, says PNGTA

National, Normal

THE East Sepik branch of the Papua New Guinea Teachers Association is calling on the provincial education office to explain where funds from the teachers’ 50% cut from their 2009 leave fare entitlements has gone to.
Branch president Michael Amos claimed that to date, there was only a balance of K4,000 in the district treasury vote number  712 account from an expected K122,300 that was supposed to have remained from teachers after the 50% cut was introduced last year.
He said a 50% reduction was introduced last year in the province to allow teachers to receive in cash half of their entitlements.
The rest of their entitlements remained in the district treasury account as their savings for them to use the following year.
“More than a half of the funds which are supposed to be saved in this account seemed to have disappeared, and you can verify that with the district treasury office,” Amos said from Wewak yesterday. 
Amos was commenting in support of claims this week by the PNGTA national vice-president Kila Avei that teachers’ appointment process in the province was corrupt.
Amos said the provincial education board had never had a meeting this year to address concerns affecting teachers in particular, the official confirmation of teacher appointments for this year after teachers applied for positions advertised last year.
“The Teaching Service Commission (TSC) form 31, is being used by individuals who claim to be teachers, use a teacher’s name and even forge their signatures on these forms and were given teaching positions on the spot, with any officer at the education office starting from the clerks approving the forms,” Amos said.