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Apr 24, 2017

Patrick Faber Says Honorarium Will Come from Last Year’s Budget

Patrick Faber

The million-dollar bonus to be provided by the Ministry of Education to non-striking teachers during the eleven-day strike last October and the subsequent attempt to make up days lost in the classroom in January remains on the table tonight.  Minister of Education Patrick Faber came out swinging against his opponents on the issue today on the sidelines of another event. He maintained that the payment, which at this point looks to be substantially less, is “small change” for the Government compared to the sacrifice it considers these B.N.T.U. teachers made at a time of great pressure.  The Deputy Prime Minister also contended that Government has done nothing illegal in obtaining the money and is prepared to defend itself against any charge levelled against it. Here is how Faber explained to News Five why the honorarium is not an ‘extra’ or ‘bonus’ payment and where it is coming from.

 

Patrick Faber, Minister of Education

“In fact, if we were to pay the teachers for the additional days that they worked – those additional days if we count them would number the four in January, would number the three in Easter, and would number the three in summer.”

 

Reporter

“June.”

 

Patrick Faber

“Right. Well, it depends on if its high school or primary school; but not all the teachers would be eligible for that kind of payment because those who were on strike were paid for their days – they are the one who would now be agreeing to make up the days, so to speak, but those who were not on strike would have given ten additional days? Why is it that giving them some kind of honorarium – because in fact, it is through paying an honorarium that monies are saved. But to answer your question about where the monies would come from – and I see my friend who evidently has an agenda, he’s a P.U.P. Senator, Senator Courtenay is now saying that it is illegal. Well, every year when we read the Budget, you know that the Ministry of Education gets a huge chunk of money. The bulk of that money is for salaries. There is no exact amount so to speak that the salaries come up to every year – there is an amount that is allotted in the Budget for salaries, that amount fluctuates from year to year. A teacher gets pregnant – nobody can determine how many teachers will get pregnant; how many teachers will go on long leave; how many teachers – there are number of things that will affect how much you will spend on the Budget and it is through that line item on the Budget that the honorarium is being paid. Which is why some of the teachers still haven’t received the honorarium – why? Because we insist that it must go through as a part of the salaries, and in fact for the Government teachers, in order for us to have gotten things in time we would have had to have had it from the start of the month, when the decision was made, so we had to wait until the beginning of May which is still upcoming, for us to make the submission so that they will be paid, I think about three hundred and seventy-seven teachers or so, at the end of May. And likewise, some of the denominational teachers have not gotten because they will be paid in the normal process of salaries, and their salary comes at the end of April. So to say that it is illegal is utter nonsense; it comes out of the salary allocation that goes for teachers and that is perfectly legal, for us to pay teachers out of that item on the Budget.”

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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2 Responses for “Patrick Faber Says Honorarium Will Come from Last Year’s Budget”

  1. Mike G says:

    Doesn’t matter where it comes from, it is still a BRIDE! Why do the Belizean people allow this to happen? Come on, WAKE UP!

  2. Teacher says:

    Come Catch 22 Day / Election Day, and Faber looses, and you need a reason why: Here it is! Clear as Day Light!

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