By Bida Elly David
The Council of Ministers has approved the sum of over 61 Billion South Sudanese Pounds (SSP) as salary in Friday’s cabinet meeting as budget for University lecturers and their supporting staff salaries increment.
This development transpired following numerous strike waged by lecturers at public universities across the country regarding poor implementation of the new salary structure as stated formerly.
Speaking to the media on Friday, Minister of information and government spokesperson, Michael Makuei Lueth, said that the cabinet had directed ministry of finance and planning to immediately effect the directives by releasing the approved budget.
“The ministry of finance is directed to cooperate and coordinate with the minster of higher education so that they can see how best it can be included. He is directed to immediately put that in action” Makuei told reporters during his cabinet media briefing on Friday.
He said that the increment of the salaries of the lecturers and the support staff came following the continuous hyperinflation across the Country as well as the fear of employment turnover for greener pastures.
“Last time about three years ago we had approved the payment on the increase in salaries of the lecturers and other supportive staff in the Universities and higher institutions of learning but now with the inflation and they have requested for their salaries to be reconsidered and the cabinet did that” he said
Minister Makuei further pointed out that lecturers at the Universities are mobile staff who can easily take move to other Universities if not treated well.
“Present lecturers in the Universities are people who are free to move out anywhere and so our fear is that in case we don’t do anything, then definitely there will be a brain drain and the brain drain is the movement of people required. Recommended based on the minster of higher education” he noted.
However, Makuei underscored that the cabinet has also passed a demand by the general education ministry on the establishment of nation commission for UNESCO in South Sudan meant to deliver education service in the Country.
He said that according to UNESCO’s constitution, a body was supposed to be set up that would work in collaboration with them in all aspects of development.
He stated that five committees shall be established to subordinate UNESCO in their programs.
“There is one committee on education, culture, number three is natural science committee and the fourth is communication and information committee and the fifth is social and human studies committee” he added.