Parents demand answers for teachers’ issue

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By DOROTHY MARK
Hundreds of Madang parents, angry that their children are not in class because of a teachers’ strike, fronted the Madang provincial education office yesterday seeking answers.
The parents, led by spokesman Morris Ban, gathered at the provincial education office at 9am and demanded that provincial education director Moses Sariki hear their concerns.
Ban said parents wanted to know why children have been without classes for three weeks.
He said they wanted Sariki and provincial finance manager Paul Amera tell them where the money meant for teachers’ leave fares went to.
They were told to return tomorrow when Sariki and other officers involved would address their concerns.
“We want our children to go back to school,” Ban said. “They can’t stay at home for another week.”
Madang Governor Peter Yama said he wanted to get to the bottom of the issue because he had already received reports of officers involved in duplicating payments.
Yama said an audit would be conducted to find out how the money for the 2017 leave fares were used.
The president of PNG Teachers’ Association in Madang, Remsy Oss, said there was to have been an greement drawn up to pave the way for the teachers to return to work, but that had not yet happened.
He said more than 700 teachers in the province needed their outstanding leave fares, totalling K4.8 million for 2017 and 2018, paid.
More than 100,000 students in the province are affected by the boycott.
Oss said they would continue to boycott classes until the provincial government paid up, reached an understanding and sign an agreement .

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