New Retirement Age: Osun Teachers Commend Gov Adeleke, Pledge Their Support

New Retirement Age: Osun Teachers Commend Gov Adeleke, Pledge Their Support

There is a need to set the records straight on Governor Ademola Adeleke’s Retirement Age Decision In response to recent statements made by the Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), Osun Chapter, Comrade Fatade, regarding the Government decision to adjust the retirement age for teachers in Osun State.

It is crucial to address certain inaccuracies and provide a more balanced perspective on the contentious issue of the new retirement age or elongation of service years for teachers in Osun State.

Firstly, the claim that Governor Adeleke’s directive came as a shock to teachers is misleading and mischievous. Governor Adeleke provided over a year for consultation and implementation of this policy. It is a statement of fact that Osun State government adopted the Federal government’s elongation of service for teachers from 35 years to 40 years or from 60 to 65 years in 2022 during the former governor Oyetola’s administration. Despite the glaring and obvious slippery intention of the then administration in adopting the policy, Osun was the first state in the South West to embrace the policy, the new administration of Governor Ademola Adeleke did not jettison the policy.

The decision was not abrupt; rather, it followed a period of dialogue and consideration, during which ample time was given for feedback and adoption by those who have signified their intentions to apply for elongation of service. Indeed, many teachers who have reached the mandatory 35 years in service or 60 years of age started enjoying the elongation of service since September, 2022 without following due process in observing the conditions and guidelines attached to its domestication. Governor Ademola Adeleke only directed that the wrongs in the proper implementation of the policy since September 2022 be addressed immediately.This is a verifiable fact.

Furthermore, it is disingenuous to suggest that the NUT chairman represents the entire teachers on this matter. His assertions that the circular’s contents were deliberately obscured are unfounded and his own opinion. The circular outlining the new retirement guidelines was issued in May 2022 with transparency and in accordance with due process. It is essential to acknowledge the purpose behind the domestication of this policy. The aim is to rejuvenate the teaching workforce by allowing more capable and motivated individuals to contribute to the education sector. This decision does not dismiss the hardwork of retired teachers but rather recognizes the need for progress and innovation in our schools. It is important to note that this decision on implementation of the retirement age aligns with broader efforts to enhance educational standards and ensure a dynamic learning environment for our students. This policy is not merely about retirement; it is about fostering positive change and growth within our education system.

The only bone of contention which Mr Fatade, the State NUT chairman failed to pinpoint in his self serving assertion is that those who wish to enjoy the new retirement age must be ready to go back to the classrooms to teach our students and use their wealth of knowledge and experience to impact positively on the educational advancement of Osun State students.The intentions of the formulators of the new retirement age were NEVER for the beneficiaries to remain in administrative positions – be it as Principals, Vice Principals, Headmasters/Headmistress or Assistants.

In conclusion, it is a known fact among an overwhelming majority of Osun State teachers that Governor Adeleke’s decision on proper and full implementation of the new retirement age reflects a commitment to sustainable educational reform. Rather than resisting change, we must embrace it for the betterment of our schools and the future of our children.

AJIBADE RAFIU ADEWUYI
For Osun Vice Principals Forum

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