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School feeding without teacher' Salary, futile - Former aide tears Ortom apart

Written By Idoma Television on Tuesday, July 4, 2017 | 3:36:00 AM

As recorded in Genesis, it is a common belief that human existence dated back to the era of the first man and woman on this planet, earth – Adam and Eve, were punished for eating the assumed forbidden fruit and the punishment for doing that was a pronouncement from their assumed creator that they shall eat from their sweat. 

Hopefully, this event lead humanity into working for ones livelihood till date. Again, an Economic principle classifies it as labour, which is a factor of production, as such; production of goods/services cannot be achieved without the element called labour. In Sule(2012), it was opined that “no organisation can survive in isolation.
Organisations need to relate with people, bodies and organisations in order to survive. 

Their continuous existence depends largely on their resources (including labour or human) to break-even at worst. Thus, it is very significant that the workforce is a stakeholder in every organization” 
 
Generally, every organisation consists of both tangible and intangible elements: the environment, vision and mission, values, objectives, strategies, authorities, work, people and other resources (land, labour, capital, entrepreneurship and technology, especially, ICT). 

The only living thing among these elements are the human beings, who have entered into contractual relationship with the organisation to offer their human endowments in exchange for some forms of rewards (Muo, 2007). Some forms of rewards talking in terms of what will be referred to in law as consideration and in simple term as wage or salary. Wage, when it is paid daily and salary, when it is paid weekly, fortnightly or monthly. 
 
Esien (2002) went further in drawing distinction between wage and salary. He opined that “in the past, important distinctions existed between wages and salary, but today, the words are used interchangeably, reflecting the convergence of method of paying skilled and unskilled employees that has happened over 40 years. A salary was defined as a fixed annual amount, paid monthly. Wages in contrast were variable weekly payments (usually made in cash) that fluctuated in value through overtime, bonuses, and piecework rates. Salaries were determined individually; wages through management/union collective bargaining”. 

Today, however, many salaried workers are unionized and paid according to union negotiated salary scales, with annual increment; while large numbers of wage earners now receive relatively stable time based earnings. But sadly, the states have enslaved workers with some giving free work day for workers to fend for themselves in lieu of pay.

Buhari conceptualized a  wonderful initiative but can not work in states owing Teachers salaries like Benue because the essence of going to school is education not food. A teacher who doesn't know when he will receive alert like the coming of Jesus can not teach because he is a professional and that is where he survives from.
The Benue Economic Team, headed by erudite Professor Dennis A.

 Ityavyar as Commissioner of Education for example, should have advised the government on the multiplier effect of such a policy implemented in negation of teachers' perquisites, except, what they are practicing as I suspect all along, is Errconomics - That’s the reaction when economists discuss policy options and they modify the policies they advocate for with time or new events. Those that react this way fall into a serious fallacy — that the policy options always stay the same over time. But that is not how it works. Here’s why.

According to BudgITng, Benue Teachers are owed 10 months salaries. It is unthinkable that a man who can not provide Akpu, Kpomo and Ogbono for his household will be happy to teach in school where the school owner serves food to pupils. 

At best, the pupils will reduce absenteeism or increase in enrollment from school because free mills but certainly it will have little or no epistemic value as the teachers would not view that as motivation but as waste.

Government must prioritize and clear salaries in the state, first, then share free food. Otherwise, it is a total waste of State and Federal Government Money, except if the teachers' reward is in Heaven.
President Buhari's School Feeding Initiative is good motivation for children but not without teachers salaries: it is waste and the blame is such states.

Gurgur Japheth is Public Policy Analyst

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