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Teachers demand refund of sh330,000 paid before job interviews

FILE PHOTO: Teachers say they paid over sh300,000 each before they were allowed to do interviews

Gulu, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Ogom Seed Secondary School teachers have petitioned school authorities in Pader district, demanding a refund of sh7.7 million which they claim was illegally extorted from all of them before they were allowed to sit recruitment interviews.

They say the reported extortion happened February and early March last year when the Ministry of Education and Sports conducted a countrywide exercise of recruitment of teachers.

The aggrieve teachers told URN that they wrote a letter dated March 23rd 2020 to the board chairperson asking his office to ensure that the money which was extorted from them through the head teacher’s office must be refunded.

They say if the school authorities fail to ensure that their money is refunded they are going to petition the Inspectorate of Government (IGG) to take action. The secondary teachers are accusing the school management of orchestrating the extortion.

Teachers told URN that before doing the interviews each diploma holder was forced to pay sh330,000 while degree holders parted with sh370,000.

The teachers claim they were made to believe that the money was meant to cater for accommodation, feedings and transport for the officials who were coming from the Ministry of Education and Sports to conduct the interviews.

The school head teacher Masimino Okello denied collecting any money from teachers for the interview. He said his office was not aware of any illegal collection of money and promised to investigate the matter.

The school board chairperson, Richard  Ojok Olal, who is also the district vice chairperson, said his office has not yet received any petition from the teachers.

He also denied participating in any alleged money extortion as put by the school teachers.

Olal, however, confirmed that during the interviews the head teacher had some arrangement with his teachers where they contributed money to facilitate the welfare of visitors who were coming to the school.

The district chairperson Godfrey Oringa Largo, has also confirmed receiving numerous complaints on alleged money extortion cases from Ogom Seed School and promised to follow up on the matter.

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URN

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