The President of the Press Union of Liberia (PUL), K. Abdullai Kamara, has said teachers must be paid salaries and emoluments commensurate with their cost of living and status upgrade.
He made the call Wednesday in the Borough of New Kru Town on Bushrod Island at a program marking the 22nd celebration of World Teachers Day organized by the Education Watch Network of Liberia (EWNWL) and the Standard Teacher Training Institute.
"In case you are wondering where this extra amount will come from, I would suggest that this be addressed by an appropriate cut down of costs for a number of other sectors, including the Legislature and high level government officials, and foreign travels, among others," Kamara said.
He also suggested that "there should be a cap on salaries and emoluments for politicians."
According to the PUL president, the Liberian economy cannot afford for government to pay monthly salaries and benefits of more than US$5,000 for Cabinet level officials or Legislators and still expect to take Liberians out of poverty.
Speaking on the theme: "Trained Teacher Guarantees a Better Future," the PUL President said a better trained education sector cannot be divorced from the role of teachers in building a post-conflict society.
"In the first place, teachers can be more effective in helping to curb conflict when they are themselves outside of the grips of conflict," he noted.
Kamara indicated that at present in Liberia, teachers are in the midst of various crises, which must be addressed in order to get the educational system of the country on a better footing.
Kamara said education, in whatever way anyone may think, is a public service that must be geared towards impacting and changing society.
"A poor people can never be removed from poverty, if the cost of education is beyond their capacity to attain it. Specifically, in a country where there is a huge manpower challenge, the government has the greater obligation to clear this gap," he emphasized.
"We salute all teachers for the extent of your sacrifice to humanity. We stand with you and look forward to the day when teachers will be treated in accordance with their work in society," he indicated.