Government’s meeting with striking teachers ends inconclusively

Source The Ghana Report

The meeting between the striking teacher unions and government officials over the Cost of living allowance (COLA), has ended inconclusively.

A member of the leadership of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), Isaac Baah who disclosed this said the meeting on Wednesday did not yield any positive results.

In an interview with JoyNews monitored by theghanareport.com, he said “government came empty-handed and so we ended the meeting”.

He added that government officials at the meeting told them that “they did not have the mandate” to grant the 20% Cost of Living Allowance (COLA) the teacher unions have demanded and requested they call off the strike before negotiations could commence.

The meeting was attended by representatives from the striking teacher unions, the Ministry of Finance, the CEO of Fair Wages and Salaries Commission Benjamin Arthur, Director-General of Ghana Education Service Prof Kwasi Opoku-Amankwa, Minister of Education Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum, and Minister of Employment and Labour Relations Ignatius Baffour-Awuah.

Meanwhile, the president of the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT), Angel Carbonu has reiterated that the striking teacher unions will not resume work until the government addresses their concerns.

He said should a court action be triggered against the teacher unions to compel them to rescind their decision, they will fight to set aside the injunction.

“If they go to court to get an injunction, we will organize, go to court and set that injunction aside. When you go to court ex-parte, you have not given an opportunity for the judge to listen to the other group. This time, if they go to court ex-parte, we will ask our legal people the next day to go to court to set that ex-parte injunction aside,” he said on eyewitness news.

NAGRAT, and three other teacher unions on Monday, July 4 declared a nationwide strike over demands for the payment of Cost of Living Allowance.

“We can no longer bear the hardship. Even more so, we reject the inequality of salaries in the public services of this country. We have been compelled under the current circumstances to publicly communicate to Ghanaians on our intention to go on strike, having gone past the June 30, 2022 deadline [that] we gave the government for the payment of the Cost of Living Allowance.

“Consequently, we have decided to embark on a strike action effective today, Monday, July 4, 2022. By this, we are informing the general public that we are withdrawing all our services in all the pre-tertiary education space – this includes teaching and non-teaching staff,” the teachers announced.

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