Tuesday, January 10, 2017 3:06 pm
The New Agency of Nigeria reports that the Executive Secretary, Benue Teaching Service Board (TSB), Prof.Wilfred Uji, says plans are underway for the digitisation of the board to eradicate sharp practices.
Uji, who disclosed this to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Makurdi, regretted that the board was yet to be ICT compliant.
He said the digitisation process would involve the creation of a website that would contain relevant information on schools and staff in the state.
Specifically, he said the entire accounting system of the board was manually driven and subject to manipulation, pointing out that the process for its computerisation was underway.
“There are enormous challenges beginning from the board, which is the think-tank, to the principals down to the field; accounts are manually driven and I intend to computerize the entire system to block all leakages.”
He regretted that owing to the multiplicity of thrift and cooperative societies, some of which were illegal, unauthorized salary deductions were going on.
The executive secretary assured that all illegal cooperative societies would be de-listed.
“We will block all leakages, reconcile all contradictions and work toward restoring the confidence of teachers to the board and to the administration of Gov Samuel Ortom because the board constitutes 40 per cent of the salary wage bill of the state.”
Uji also admitted that there were challenges in the issuance of receipts, regretting that sometimes the Ministry for Education authorises levies on students without the knowledge of the board.
“The relationship between the board and the ministry is symbiotic and in most cases, such dialectical relationship can be conflicting, especially in the absence of a governing council for the board.
“The ministry collects sport levy, which is clearly outside their mandate.
“We have also not authorised the collection of N500.00 levy for the issuance of identity cards for secondary school students in the state.
“Anybody collecting such money is illegal; it is not from the board and has not been directed by me.”
He, however, assured that the board would purge of all bad eggs, “we will sift the system and achieve result oriented goals and clamp down on illegal recruitment rackets”.
“Things have gone wrong and we are going to fix them,” Uji said.
He said the state had 300 schools with a student population of 800,000 while staff strength was 6000.
Reacting to the allegations of identity card levy, the Commissioner, Ministry for Education, Prof. Dennis Tyavyar, said the levy covered other development projects in the education sector and not limited to identity cards.
He explained that the decision was that of the Parent Teachers Association (PTA) as their contribution to the development of the education sector.