Bribery delays recruitment of teachers

Education minister received complaints against officers seeking bribe to issue job letters

Our Correspondent September 25, 2022


The alleged bribe seeking has delayed the process of recruiting more than 57,000 government school teachers and the revelation has come from none other than the Sindh education and culture minister Syed Sardar Ali Shah.

The minister, who chaired a meeting of the officers and spoke to the media as well in Hyderabad on Saturday, said a deadline of October 15 has been given to the education officers to complete the process.

“If the concerned officers fail [to meet the cutoff date], action will be taken,” he warned. The recruitment process against 17,423 vacant posts of Junior Elementary School Teachers (JEST) and 39,849 posts of Primary School Teachers (PST) is underway.

Shah lamented that despite clear directives of the provincial government to fast track the appointments, officers in question have been delaying the appointments.

He claimed that no other department in the country had filled almost 58,000 vacancies in one go like the Sindh education department.

The minister disclosed about having received complaints of bribe seeking from many districts of the province for issuance of the offer letters. However, he told, in some districts of Sindh the appointments have been completed. “The process was sped up in the areas where the government schools needed teachers on urgent basis.”

Earlier, during the meeting the Director General Human Resources, Zameer Khoso apprised that 265,282 candidates appeared in the recruitment test for 17,423 posts of JEST and another 297,487 for 39,849 posts of PST. As many as 51,785 candidates passed the test for the JEST and 84,080 for PST.

He mentioned, 12,795 offer letters and 10,454 appointment orders have been issued so far for the JEST posts while 24,951 offer letters and 21,351 appointment letters have been issued for the PST posts.

Stalled schooling

The rains and subsequent floods have disrupted education of more than 2.8 million children in over 22,000 schools, the minister revealed.

According to him, around 17,000 school buildings have been damaged either partially or fully. Another 5,000 schools have been turned into relief camps.

However, Shah informed, the damaged schools will be temporarily shifted to the tent schools. He claimed that he will personally monitor the process of learning in the tent schools. “We don’t have enough funds to reconstruct all the damaged schools,” he said.

He apprised that the district administrations have also been asked to shift the displaced people staying at the school-based camps to the tent cities so that the children can resume their studies. The head masters of the government schools, turned into relief camps, have been given the responsibility to protect the furniture and fixtures, he added. “The schools in many other districts are still submerged.”

Hoarding textbooks

Shah raided Naval Rai Government High School in downtown Hyderabad on a complaint of hoarding of the textbooks. “What are these books doing in the warehouse if they were meant to be distributed among students?” he questioned the concerned officers.

The students of the government schools and their parents in all parts of Sindh have been complaining against the Sindh Text Book Board for delaying the supply of books.

Shah noted that in such a situation those books could have been made available by up to 1,000 students.

Shah suspended TEO primary and secondary and asked the Sindh Secretary Education to take disciplinary action. If negligence or misconduct is established on those officers they will get sacked, Shah said.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 25th, 2022.


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