The United Nation’s Children Fund (UNICEF) is considering paying an amount of $100 per month for nearly 200,000 public school teachers, the Ministry of Education (MoE) said on Sunday.
According to the MoE, more than 40,000 public school teachers have received two months' worth of salaries provided by the UN, and the remaining teachers will be paid within the next two weeks.
The UNICEF’s plan is for a period of two months but it is expected to expand.
“Indeed, the salary of the teachers is $100 which is being paid by UNICEF. Those teachers whose salary is more than $100, the ministry will pay the rest of the money,” said Aziz Ahmad Riyan, a spokesman for the MoE.
The teachers—who were receiving low amounts of pay even during the time of former Afghan governments—said that they are suffering from a deteriorated economic condition.
Hamira, 48, who has been working as a teacher for 28 years, said that she is ill but unable to make appointments with the doctors due to economic challenges.
“I have a lot of problems. I had only my income from teaching to pay the rent and the family’s expenses. This is a residence of one of my relatives. I live in their kitchen,” she said.
When the Islamic Emirate swept into power, many government employees remained unpaid for a long time as Afghanistan faced a sudden economic meltdown after the country’s more than $9 billion central bank’s assets were frozen.
To avert a humanitarian disaster, the UN agencies sought to pay the salaries of the employees without putting funds through government departments.
“I heard about UNICEF’s initiative of providing $100 for the teachers yesterday, I welcome this initiative because the salary of the teachers is very low,” said Karima, a teacher.
“I borrowed about 150,000 Afs for family expenses. My child was injured in an accident I didn’t have money to treat him,” said a teacher who wished to go unnamed.
The US Department of Treasury earlier stated that the humanitarian organizations are allowed to give funds to prevent the ongoing crisis in Afghanistan, including paying salaries of civil servants.