Govt teacher unions meeting inconclusive

A meeting between the government’s representatives and leadership of the three teacher unions to end the recently announced industrial strike ended inconclusively in Accra yesterday.

To this end, the two parties have agreed to reconvene later today to continue deliberations upon further consultations.

Deputy Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Bright Wireko Brobbey, who addressed the media, described the meeting as constructive despite the inability of the parties to reach a final decision.

He said although government had already made its position known on the matter for which the teacher unions embarked on strike, it was necessary for deliberations to consider the opinion of the unions.

He noted that, government was ready and willing to engage all parties in a bid to end the current impasse.

“Although, we wished the strike was called-off today, we also understand that there is the need for further consultations for the desired outcome.

So we don’t have to take an entrenched position. We will meet here tomorrow to conclude the matter,” MrWireko-Brobbey added.

He however, assured that today’s meeting would result in the halt of the strike by the teacher unions.

Reverend Isaac Owusu, President of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), on his part, said, the unions were undertaking further consultations on the matter before concluding discussions with the government representatives.

Although, the strike action was still ongoing, he noted that, the teacher unions were committed to resolving the differences that compelled the need for the action.

Last Friday, the leadership of three Teacher Unions asked its members to withdraw its services in all pre-tertiary education institutions as it embarked on an industrial strike effective yesterday.

They include the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) and the Coalition of Concerned Teachers (CCT-Ghana).

According to the three Teacher Unions at a press conference in Accra, the decision to embark on the strike was due to government’s failure to heed to its call to terminate the appointment of Dr Eric Nkansah as the Director-General of the Ghana Education Service (GES) after the November 4 deadline ultimatum.

“It must be stated that the Director-General position is the preserve of Educationists and has been occupied by Educationists since its creation.

We have been compelled under the current circumstances to publicly communicate to Ghanaians on our intension to go on stroke having reached the November 4 deadline we gave government,”  President of the GNAT, Rev Isaac Owusu addressing stated.

 He noted that the appointment of Dr Nkansah, who was not an educationist, was contrary to the substantive and procedural rules of the Collective Agreement 2020.

The purpose of the Agreement which was signed between the GES and the Teacher Unions was to set forth the condition of service relating to salaries, wages, hours of work and other conditions of service and rules of employment.

Rev Owusu also noted that another reason behind strike decision was the extension of the Deputy Director-General of the GES, Mr Anthony Boateng in order to bring him back into the educational system.

He further explained that the Unions would be meeting with the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations after the press conference to try and find a lasting solution to the issue following an invitation by the Minister.


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