Executive Director of Africa Education Watch Kofi Asare has intimidated that the main reason for which pretertiary teachers have declared an indefinite strike is that they feel disrespected by the Government concerning how it has responded to their demand for a cost of living allowance (COLA).
Four teacher unions -the Ghana National Association of Teachers(GNAT), the National Association of Graduate Teachers(NAGRAT), the Coalition of Concerned Teachers ( CCT), and the Teachers and Educational Workers Union (TEWU), declared the strike Monday, July 4, 2022, citing Government’s failure to pay them a cost of living allowance ( COLA) they had demanded at the beginning of the year as a result of the rising cost of living.
But Mr. Asare has explained that the indefinite strike could have been averted if Government had shown respect to the teachers after they had made their demand for COLA.
“Initial notice was given to Government as early as February. And since February, the teacher unions have sent about three different reminders after the initial call in February.
Sometimes it is good that even amid severe resource constraints, Government will just grant an opportunity to labor to listen to their concerns and let them feel important and part of the process.
The challenge is that after all these follow-ups, and all these releases, the teacher unions did not have an opportunity to even be invited by Government to listen to their demands. So they’re feeling disrespected. Should Government have given them due respect at least as partners in the development process? And that is, I think, the main reason why they have gone on this strike. Yeah, so Government should have a discussion with them on their requests. It wouldn’t have gotten to this,” Mr. Asare revealed in an interview with TV3 Monday night.
Meanwhile, the Ghana Education Service (GES) has invited the leadership of the teacher unions and urged calm among parents and guardians, assuring that they are monitoring the issue and will act accordingly.