Emirati teachers resigning due to low motivation and pay, FNC told

Council member Salem Al Shehhi said media reports suggested 319 Emirati teachers had quit their jobs in public schools last year.

FNC member Hamad Al Rahoomi. Delores Johnson / The National
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ABU DHABI // Emirati teachers are leaving the profession because of overwork, low salaries and lack of motivation and evaluation, the FNC has been told.

Council member Salem Al Shehhi said media reports suggested 319 Emirati teachers had quit their jobs in public schools last year. He said he had heard significant numbers of were teachers resigning because the profession had “become almost repulsive”.

Mr Al Shehhi complained that the Education Minister, Hussain Al Hammadi, had declined to attend five consecutive FNC sessions.

“I raised this question on April 14, and this is the fifth session it has been forwarded because the minister has not shown up,” he said.

Before it began a four-month break, the FNC held a marathon 11-hour session from 9pm on Tuesday to 8am yesterday.

Dubai member Hamad Al Rohoomi asked the Minister of Finance, Obaid Al Tayer, whether information was leaked to the media about a new pensions law, and whether the pensions authority intended to publish the new law while the FNC was in recess.

“How accurate is this information?” he said.

Mr Al Rohoomi said questions about the pensions law had been raised at the previous session of the FNC and had not been answered.

“It is within our rights and jurisdiction to ask,” he said. “And it is the right of any person to hear the Government’s comments regarding the amendments.”

Mr Al Tayer neither confirmed nor denied that the details of the new pensions law had been deliberately leaked.

He said, however, that the constitution allowed the member to ask a minister about this issue. He also said the law was not a new one and that the pensions authority was still reviewing it.

Mr Al Rohoomi also asked the Minister of Economy, Sultan Al Mansouri, why young and newly qualified drivers received less insurance cover than older people. He said this meant young drivers often registered their cars under an older family member’s name, which could pose a security risk.

The minister said there were regulations to ensure that insurance companies did not discriminate between drivers when issuing third-party insurance, which was compulsory.

Fines of up to Dh50,000 were supposed to act as a deterrent, he said. The authority had received 3,000 complaints from applicants about the issue, all of which had been investigated and some referred to court.

However, full insurance cover was optional and, around the world, drivers under the age of 20 had less cover than other motorists, he said.