…as teachers also likely to receive their dues



MASERU – School principals and teachers across the country who are owed money dating back to 2012 for services rendered could finally get their dues. This follows recommendations to parliament by the Ombudsman for the National Assembly to appeal to ministries to prioritise payment of all outstanding civil servants’ monies – including gratuities, terminal benefits, under payments and acting allowances. The recommendation comes after Ombudsman, Advocate Tlotliso Polaki, received numerous cases from aggrieved people claiming not to have received what is due to them by way of their terminal benefits, acting allowances, gratuities and underpayments allowances.

Advocate Polaki, in the report, stated that some of these aggrieved persons allege that since their retirement, they have neither received their terminal benefits nor monthly pensions, as a result have been left with no means of livelihood. The Ombudsman received around 30 cases from Ministry of Education and Training between the years 2017 and 2022. Complainants include children who articulated that their parents, who were teachers, died before receiving their terminal benefits. There are also principals who have been acting since 2017 but have not received their acting allowances and those who have not received their terminal benefit since they retired.

’Mamatšeliso Masoabi is one of the people that approached the Ombudsman to help her get what is due to her stating that she retired in July 2020 and has not received her terminal benefits with the explanation that her file is missing despite her having sent all the required documents only to be told that her name does not appear in the system. Another aggrieved person, according to Ombudsman’s report, is Thabang Mopeli who reported that his father passed on before he could be paid his terminal benefits after retirement.  In an interview with Public Eye the Lesotho Teachers Association General Secretary, Letsatsi Ntsibulane and Lesotho Schools Principal Association (LESPA) General Secretary and a principal at Lesia High School in Maseru, Mathafeng Moteuli, confirmed that there are indeed a lot of teachers who have not been paid what is due to them dating back to 2017.

They said some of the teachers who were supposed to have received their terminal benefits as soon as they retired have died before getting what is due to them.  The teachers and principals’ unions said this is the greatest challenge the education sector is facing which left teachers and retired teachers distressed.  Ntsibulane said among others Qacha’s Nek acting principals have not been paid their acting allowances dating back to 2012.

The Minister of Education, Professor Ntoi Rapapa has since confirmed to this publication that the ministry owed many teachers across the country, but noted that the ministry has gradually been paying them – even though the entire debt is yet to be completely settled.

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