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UNATU, Museveni Disagree Over Pay Rise for Science Teachers

Speaking at the National Teachers Day celebrations at Kololo ceremonial grounds, Filbert Baguma the UNATU General Secretary noted that the idea of preferring science teachers is wrong and a sign of discrimination among the teachers and other government workers who are not scientists.
President Yoweri Museveni delivering his State of Nation Address at Kololo.

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The Uganda National Teachers Union-UNATU on Tuesday disagreed with President Museveni on the government’s plan to increase the remuneration of science teachers. 

Speaking at the National Teachers Day celebrations at Kololo ceremonial grounds, Filbert Baguma the UNATUGeneral Secretary noted that the idea of preferring science teachers is wrong and a sign of discrimination among the teachers and other government workers who are not scientists.

He argued that if the government insists on the payment of a basic salary of four million shillings for science teachers without giving any increment to other teachers, it will put the resumption of teaching in jeopardy.  

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Baguma said that UNATU is not against the proposed increment, but wants all graduate teachers to benefit from the increment.

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In June 2021, President Museveni while meeting doctors under their umbrella Uganda Medical Association (UMA) at the Entebbe State House, reiterated the government’s commitment to enhance salaries of medical practitioners and other scientists including teachers. The pledge was recently approved by the cabinet putting the science teachers' salary to four million shillings.

However, humanities and arts teachers weren’t happy with the discussion. Baguma says that the increasing salaries of science teachers came at a time when the government has failed to honour its pledge to enhance all teachers’ salaries as agreed upon in the collective bargain agreement that had been signed in 2018.  

Baguma further reminded the President about a pledge he made during the 2020 international teachers’ day celebrations when he promised to establish a salary review commission.

However, Museveni said that the government will not backtrack on the decision.

Museveni said that the government was focused on developing Uganda using a science-led development strategy.

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Museveni asked UNATU officials not to resist his efforts or put him under pressure after knowing that the government is prioritizing scientists first to encourage Science and Technology Innovation.

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Museveni however, said that he appreciates the importance and contribution of arts and Humanities. He said that due to limited resources, the government cannot give a pay rise for all teachers.

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