12 Sep 2002

Solomon Islands teachers show up for work despite strike threat

11:52 am on 12 September 2002

Teachers at many of the schools in Solomon islands turned up for work yesterday despite the threat of a nationwide strike.

George Saemane, the principal of King George V1 secondary school in Honiara, says his teachers showed up to take their classes despite the government being unable to meet arrears in wages.

The government has had ongoing problems meeting the salary payments of public servants on time.

Mr Saemane says his staff resolved early on that they would attempt to get the students through their exams.

"It is when the current pay doesn't come and I don't give them something to keep them going that they actually get involved in the sit-in protest. What I've done with my teachers was just tell them that we have to complete our syllabus and be able to get the students through exams. They've been very patient and they've been complying with our collective decision."

Mr Saemane says he has had to provide some of his staff with food when the government doesn't meet their pay on time.