80 Teachers in Nkhotakota Not Paid in January
About 80 Primary School teachers in Nkhotakota district have accused officials at the District Council of playing hide and seek by delaying to process their January 2021 salaries, five months since they were skipped on the payroll.
The aggrieved teachers, 83 in total, were skipped on the January payroll which officials say was a result of system error.
The teachers lament that for over four months they have been engaging the District Education Office on the issue but to no avail.
In an interview with Zodiak Online one of the teachers who opted for anonymity said they have lost hope on whether they will indeed be paid as the District Education Office keeps on changing tune on when exactly they would get their wages.
“When we discovered that we were skipped on the January salaries we engaged the DEM (District Education Manager now Chief Education Officer) who told us the issue will be sorted.
She assured us that we would get our money in February. When February came, we were told of March. Now June is also ending and we don’t know exactly when we will receive the money.” Said one of the teachers.
When contacted, Nkhotakota District Chief Education Officer, Getrude Maliko Chipeta admitted that the said teachers were skipped on the January payroll but she was quick to say the council is working hard to rectify the anomaly.
Asked what happened for the names to be skipped, Maliko Chipeta said the Human Resource Department was in a better position to explain the matter as is technical in nature.
Principal Human Resource Manager for Nkhotakota District Council Cossam Masanjala denied taking our questions saying he was not authorized to speak to the media. He referred us to Acting District Commissioner Ben Tohno who also referred us to the Director of Administration as he was out of office.
Nkhotakota District Council Director of Administration James Tembo also admitted that the teachers were indeed skipped on the January payroll.
“It's true that about 80 teachers did not receive their January salaries due to a technical fault on the payroll.
“When they were employed, these teachers were introduced as non-established positions on the payroll. As DHRMD (Department of Human Resource and Management Development) we supposed to rectify that problem before the expiry date,” said Tembo.
He however said the anomaly was rectified and the teachers have been receiving their salaries without problems since February.
“The problem was corrected and the teachers are getting their salaries. We are now processing their arrears for January and they will get their money in July.”
The aggrieved teachers say the development has affected their financial flow and most of them have now landed into debts to try to meet their needs.
Government pays Primary School teachers’ salaries using their respective District Councils through the Decentralisation Programme.