Johnny Akpakli and some executives addressing the media
The Greater Accra Regional Council of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) has cautioned government not to delay the implementation of the Second Tier Pension Scheme for teachers beyond June 2014.
GNAT has also given June 20, 2014 as deadline for government to implement other agreements reached between teacher unions and government at a stakeholders’ meeting aimed at addressing their demands.
The Regional GNAT Chairman, Johnny Akpakli, speaking to the press on Thursday in Accra, indicated that the Ghana Education Service (GES) was the employer of teachers, hence there should not be any doubt on the authority of the employer considering that the Ghana Education Service Act and the Pensions Act has stated so clearly.
‘We are not amused at all with the protracted argument as to who is the employer of teachers, which is delaying the implementation of 2 nd Tier Pension. For this reason, we shall not tolerate any further delay in the implementation of the scheme after the ending of June 2014,’ he said.
Teacher unions in the country had threatened to embark on nationwide strike on May 16, 2014, over the 2 nd Tier Pension, and other issues including freeze on annual salary increment, non-payment of vehicle maintenance allowance, withdrawal of allowance for teacher trainees, withdrawal of waiver on vehicles for teachers, among others.
Subsequently, government on May 15, 2014, in a communiquÃ©, agreed with the unions to collate and validate data on transfer grants of qualified beneficiaries, and has also pledged to liaise with the Finance Ministry to determine the total cost of incremental credits for 2011 and 2012. Government had also referred the issue of teachers’ pension to the National Tripartite Committee.
But the Greater Accra Region GNAT Chairman believed a lack of specific timeline from government towards the implementation of the decisions proved an attempt to delay addressing their needs, hence their proposal of the June deadline.
Mr. Akpakli also noted that some teachers were facing difficulties in submitting relevant data for the payment of outstanding arrears, promising that his outfit would ensure that all teachers submit their required data.
‘Strikes are one of the weapons unions use to enforce demands of members. If the language government understands are strikes and threats of strike, then they should prepare for more,’ the chairman stressed.
He appealed to members to remain resolute and disregard issues which hinder their progress, as the association sought solutions.
BY Ernest Nutsugah
BY Ernest Nutsugah
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