Recent squabbles that erupted between the Ministry of Education and the leadership of the National Teachers’ Association of Liberia (NTAL) over the implementation of the Public Private Partnership (PPP) took a different dimension when on Monday, April 11, members of the National Representative Council (NRC), a subsidiary of the NTAL, impeached the president, Reverend Ellen G. Varfley, with immediate effect.
NTAL secretary general, Samuel Y. Johnson, read the resolution of the impeachment procedure on behalf of the council to the gathering.
He said the impeachment of Rev. Varfley was based on a breach of constitutional mandate, which has brought the association into public disrepute for her insincerity and inability to protect and defend the interest of NTAL.
The resolution said Rev. Varfley allegedly contradicted and betrayed the interest of the association after signing off on both communications from NTAL’s National Executive Committee (NEC) and the Representative Council against the Ministry of Education/Public Private Partnership test, but then later secretly calling other teachers, encouraging them to take the test.
“You failed to relate to fellow NEC members concerning the ongoing MOE teacher’s test which is part of the PPP process,” the resolution said.
The NRC also informed Rev. Varfley in a communication addressed to her that her director’s position at the MOE indicates a conflict of interest in which her Ministry position is being given greater priority than her leadership role at the NTAL.
The proposed Public Private Partnership, according to the resolution adopted by the MOE, also violates the Education Reform Act of August 8, 2011 section 4.4, 1a and article VI of the Liberian Constitution and as such, the NTAL says it will not cooperate with the MOE for its implementation.
The resolution urged Government to put a halt to the implementation of the PPP, including the ongoing testing, and hold a nationwide consultative meeting as indicated in all of the communications addressed to the MOE.
The NTAL Representative Council says it is vehemently opposed to the administering of tests to teachers and education workers, noting, “we know that the test is a part of the process of the PPP scheme.”
The NTAL leadership called upon all members to refrain from sitting the test with the exclusion of Monrovia Consolidated School System (MCSS), alleging that many of NTAL’s members are clearly being targeted.
But in sharp reaction to the NRC’s decision, Rev. Varfley told the Daily Observer via mobile phone that she remains the NTAL’s legitimate president.
“So nothing is going to worry me, because we have a constitution that governs the association,” she added.
Allegations brought against her by the NRC, the embattled president said, should not be given credence, promising to prosecute those making such pronouncements through the courts.
The twenty-seven member council of the NRC that announced the impeachment of Rev. Varfley is the highest decision making body of the NTAL.