By Libya Herald reporter.
Benghazi, 30 October, 2017:
The House of Representatives at its session today agreed in principle that teachers’ salaries should be increased. It has set up a committee to report which has its recommendations on the size of the increase by the end of November. As a result of the decision, teachers (at least in the east of the country) are reported to have agreed end their strike and start the new school year next Sunday, 5 November.
Many have agreed to return to schools tomorrow in preparation for the new semester.
The teachers, who are demanding that their salaries be doubled, had submitted a request to the HoR to examine their grievances. They have been on strike since mid-September, causing the start of the school year to be postponed three times – first till 1 October, then 15 October, then indefinitely.
Among other demands, they also want health insurance and better security in schools.
The education minister in Tripoli-based Presdiency Council’s government, Osman Abdel Jalil, (which the HoR does recognise) had offered a bonus based on the number of classes teachers take, but this was rejected as unfair, although the education ministry subsequently said it would implement the offer nonetheless.
There are some 517,000 teachers alone on the education ministry’s payroll, although it is alleged that considerably less than half actually teach. At a conservative estimate, a doubling of teacher’s salaries would add at least more than half a billion dinarsto the government’s annual expenditure.
Is it not clear if the PC government in Tripoli will accept what the HoR committee proposes or whether the Cenral Bank of Libya will pay it or Abdul Jalil’s offer.