NAN learnt that the Local Government Education Authorities began to issue salary cheques to the teachers on Wednesday, Dec. 28.
A teacher in Umuahia North Local Government Area (LGA), however, told NAN, on condition of anonymity, that the cheques could not be cashed “because they had no cash backing”.
“We were paid last in June. I got my cheque on Wednesday, Dec. 28, while some got theirs on Friday– but it did not specify which month’s pay.
“But, we take it that the cheques represent the July salary,” the teacher said.
He said the cheques have a lifespan of one week and would lapse if it not cashed within the period.
Another teacher in Bende LGA, who identified herself simply as Anthonia, said she collected her cheque on Wednesday but had not been able to cash it.
“I got a credit alert from my bank on Wednesday to show that my salary had been paid but the bank balance remained the old amount of about N900.
“When I inquired, I was told by a bank official that the cash had not dropped and was advised to wait until the cash drops,” Anthonia said.
A Local Government Education Authority Secretary in one of the LGAs, who confirmed the development on condition of anonymity, said the banks would go to the clearing house before they would commence cash payment to the teachers.
He said the decision to issue cheques was part of government measures to check ghost teachers’ syndrome.
“Government wants to be sure that only genuine teachers are paid, so that the issue of ghost teachers’ syndrome will be a thing of the past,” the secretary said.
Responding to the development, the Chairman of Abia State Universal Basic Education, Kenechukwu Nwosu, declined to speak on the issue when NAN contacted him on phone.