By Elesha George
Adjunct professors at The University of the West Indies (The UWI) Five Islands Campus have had their wages deferred for a third month.
The workers have not been paid since September and were told by the university that the delay is due to “extenuating circumstances”.
“Regrettably, the payments that were due to be paid during this week will be delayed due to extenuating circumstances,” the educators were told in an internal email.
The UWI has blamed the volume of payments to be processed and the “manual environment” in which they operate, as the cause of the delay.
The institution said a turnaround time of at least three weeks after submission of time sheets is needed for payments to be processed.
No further details about the challenges facing The UWI Five Islands campus were given in the missive and teachers have been left to simply wait.
Observer reached out via email to Financial Manager, Simone Brown, who wrote the missive but had not received a response up to publication time. The newsroom was also unable to reach Professor Densil A Williams the Pro Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the Five Islands Campus, who is currently off island.
Meanwhile, some lecturers are keeping a positive spirit, telling Observer that their main concern is making sure students can access quality education in a safe environment. The university has been operating virtually since school reopened in September.
Currently, the staff is engaged in marking projects and are preparing to mark exams.
“If we are delivering, we should be remembered and looked after,” one professor said.
However, mindful that the one-year-old campus is going to take a while to solidify its status, insiders say they have financial commitments to meet.
The UWI Five Islands said in the email that it is working to make the payroll system automated, which it hopes will help to reduce the turnaround time in processing payments.