From the K15 billion 2014 National Budget, the National Government has allocated K1.5 billion in the Education Sector this year. This is an increase of K160 million from the 2013 allocation.
K1,082 million will come under the direct support and management of the Department of Education.
This fund is expected to utilize the 2014 academic year for over 5,000 Elementary Schools, over 3, 000 Primary Schools, 208 High Schools, 6 National High Schools, 7 Technical Schools and 9 Teachers’ Education Institutions.
The fund will also assist over 38,000 teachers in the country.
The Speaker of Parliament, Theo Zurenoc, ordered an investigation into the Department of Education concerning teachers’ leave fares, salary discrepancies, and other issues pertaining to teachers’ welfare.
Speaker Zurenuoc has instructed the Parliamentary Referral Committee on Education to investigate and furnish a report to his office immediately.
The committee is chaired by Wabag Open MP, Robert Ganim.
Mr. Ganim is an Educationist by profession and former Senior Advisor Education in Enga province.
Other members are Goilala MP and Deputy Chairman, Daniel Mona, Eastern Highlands Governor, Julie Soso, Sandaun Governor, Amkat Mai, and Jimi MP, Mai Dop.
In a letter dated January 21, 2014 to Mr. Ganim, the Speaker and Finschaffen Open MP, Theo Zurenuoc, said the Committees of Parliament play an important role in keeping the Executive Government along with Government Departments and line agencies to be accountable for whatever policy-decisions or legislations formulated.
He said the Parliamentary Committees have the powers to conduct inquiries into issues of public importance, through their own initiative as provided under the ‘Permanent Parliamentary Committee Act 1994’.
As such, the speaker said this is the way forward for the Parliamentary Referral Committee on Education to conduct an inquiry into the Department of Education relating to plight of the teachers in PNG.
I believe this inquiry will influence other Committee Chairs. The Parliamentary Committee Secretariat will provide necessary assistance and support in coordinating this inquiry.
Mr. Ganim confirmed the Parliament Speaker has instructed his team to conduct a Nation-Wide inquiry into the issues of teachers.
He said it’s chronic and has been on-going for far too long and needs to be investigated.
Chairman Ganim has written to Acting Director of Parliamentary Committee Secretariat, Joe Warau to put in place a technical team and draft the Terms of Reference for this investigation to kick off sooner rather than later.