BY UBON EKANEM, CALABAR
The Cross River State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) says over N70 million monthly has been saved being expenses on about 700 ghost teachers uncovered in the state’s payroll.
Chairman of SUBEB, Dr Stephen Odey, who briefed newsmen on activities of the board in Calabar, also said that about 758 teachers were discovered to be parading the state’s school system with fake certificates, ranging from National Certificate of Education (NCE) to Masters Degree in various disciplines.
Odey listed the higher institutions used as certificate racketeering centres by the affected teachers as Federal College of Education, Obudu and College of Education Akamkpa, both located in the State.
Other schools also involved in the fake certificate business include; Alvan Ikoku College of Education Owerri; National Teachers Institute (NTI) Kaduna; Imo State University; and Federal College of Education Ikwo, Ebonyi State.
He debunked allegations of witch-hunting leveled against the board by some of the affected teachers, stating that aside from the huge funds the state government would saved monthly from resources hitherto expended on ghost teachers, fake and uncertified teachers, the board has worked to create an enabling environment for stabilizing basic education in the state.
According to the SUBEB boss, since the Board had identified teachers as key in the educational advancement of the state, there would be no room in the public school system for indolence or teachers with limited knowledge of the profession.
On why the affected teachers have not been out-rightly dismissed from service, Dr. Odey said the board decided to apply caution as not to increase the crime rate and other society ills in the state.
He however said that any of the affected teachers, who on his own volition, choose to retire or resign his or her appointment is free to do so.
Meanwhile, the Cross River State Police command is investigating accusations of forgery leveled against more than 25 teachers in the state.