Following the decision by teacher unions to go on indefinite strike, educational activities in pre-tertiary educational institutions are expected to come to a halt today, Tuesday, July 5.
The unions declared a strike yesterday after the government ignored their request for a 20% cost of living allowance (COLA).
Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT), Coalition of Concerned Teachers, Ghana (CCT-GH), and Teachers and Educational Workers Union are the unions (TEWU).
Silence is deafening.
Speaking to the press in Accra, Thomas Tanko Musah, General Secretary of GNAT, said the unions had made the request to the government since February of this year, but nothing had been done.
“The government’s deafening silence on this matter is concerning and leaves much to be desired of any government that cares about its workers,” he said.
He went on to say that a deadline for the allowance to be approved, which had been given to the government, had passed last Thursday, necessitating the strike.
“By doing so, we are informing the public that we are withdrawing all of our services in the pre-tertiary educational space, including both teaching and non-teaching staff,” he stated.
Because of the country’s current economic hardship, most teachers and educational workers, according to Mr Tanko, live in near-poverty.
He claimed that the continuous rise in the prices of fuel, goods, and services had rendered the four and seven percent salary increases from last year insignificant.
He stated that inflation is currently at 27.6 percent, with no signs of decreasing or stabilizing in the near future.
The GNAT General Secretary reminded the government of its responsibility, as outlined in Article 36 of the 1992 Constitution, saying that the government was tasked with taking actions that would ensure the maximum welfare, freedom, and happiness of the citizens.
He also stated that the government was responsible for ensuring a sound and healthy economy, which included “the assurance of a fair and realistic remuneration for production and productivity in order to encourage continued production and higher productivity.”
Mr Musah expressed his displeasure with wage disparities in the public sector and called for a review of the salary structure.