— Says over 4,395 persons earmarked to benefit
The Government through the Ministry of Education (MOE) in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning (MFDP) has begun the disbursement of US$1 million Stimulus honorarium to private-school teachers in Liberia.
The disbursement, which started on Wednesday, December 23, 2020, is in fulfillment of recent pronouncement made by President George Manneh Weah in recognizing the financial difficulties private school teachers were experiencing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic that intensified in the country earlier this year.
The honorarium, which according to the MOE, is also being paid to legitimate private-school teachers as the Government of Liberia’s appreciation of their selfless and invaluable contribution in molding the minds of the upcoming generation during the peak of COVID-19.
The government also stressed that it has gathered that some owners of private schools, including faith-based schools, have been unable to pay their teachers and faculties since February 2020, owing to limited or no tuition payment.
Speaking at the start of the disbursement of the honorarium, Education Minister, D. Ansu Sonii, disclosed that about 4,395 private school teachers have been earmarked to benefit.
Minister Sonii stated that private school teachers, who are to benefit from the stimulus package, are individuals who have met the necessary requirements set-forth by the Ministry of Education.
He appealed to other schools, which have not sent the names of their teachers, to do so now in order for them to be incorporated among the beneficiaries.
“Owners of private schools are requested to submit their last updated payrolls to the task force through the Ministry of Education for validation before payment,” Minister Sonii said. “Payroll submission must include payment details such as account numbers, mobile money numbers and National Biometric Identification Numbers (NIR-ID).”
Earlier, MOE Financial Comptroller, Augustine G. Goe, who gave the overview of the honorarium, said the package is in fulfillment of the pronouncement and consistent with the directive of President Weah, a committee was set up at the MOE to conduct the validation, ensuring that the fund is paid to intended beneficiaries.
According to him, the team comprises the MOE, MFDP, IAA, CSA and the NTAL, among others.
This team, he said, compiled and validated the eligible beneficiaries who have correctly submitted the required information thus far.
He said, “Today, we begin the process of disbursement and we are happy to serve and ensure that the funds are accessed by only the intended beneficiaries.”
In remarks, the President of the National Teachers Association of Liberia, Mary Nyumah, thanked the government for the distribution of the stimulus package to private school teachers.
She also encouraged the government to consider the provision of residential quarters for teachers assigned in rural parts of the country.
Meanwhile, some of the beneficiaries who received their honorarium through the mobile money platform thanked President Weah and MOE as well as MFDP for the gesture.
Each of the beneficiaries is expected to receive the amount of US$45 directly to their mobile platform.
The program was graced by the Principals Association of Liberia, Private School Teachers Association, as well as officials from the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning, among others.