Lilo has called upon teachers to return to work, assuring them of government's commitment to pay their claim which amounts to some seven-point-six million dollars.Speaking at a Press Conference last Friday, Mr Lilo stated that the striking teachers must understand that there is a process in which government must follow. Lilo said that what the teachers are demanding is in some ways asking government to venture into some illegal arrangements to pay their claim.
He said teachers should wait patiently for the passage of the supplementary appropriation bill 2007 by parliament. Mr Lilo refutes assertions that there were no provisions for the claim in the budget. Lilo said that contrary to what some teachers may think, the government has already catered for the teachers' claims through the supplementary budget. The Finance and Treasury Minister said the assertions stemmed from a misunderstanding of the nature of preparation and presentation of government's budget.
Minister Lilo stated that the claims are quite substantial as it covers inducement allowances, salary re-leveling, long and dedicated service benefits and annual leave expenses. Lilo said that as such, the teachers need to give government time.