Teachers Join Organized Labour Demo


Winston Mills-Compton teaches a class in mathematics at the Mfantsipim Boys School in Cape Coast, Ghana, June 20, 2006. Mfantsipim is one of the oldest schools in Cape Coast, a town that prides itself as the academic center of the country. UN Secretary General Kofi Annan is one of the school's alumni.  (Photo by Jonathan Ernst)



 

Over 30,000 teachers belonging to Coalition of Concerned Teachers (CCT- Ghana) have thrown their weight behind Organized Labour which intends to hit the streets to demonstrate against the recent increase in utility tariffs and fuel prices.

 

According to the teachers, the increases in tariffs, taxes and levies show that government is insensitive to the plight of Ghanaians.

 

The Organized Labour will on Wednesday hit the streets to force government to reduce the utility tariffs.

 

It has asked government to immediately withdraw the Energy Sector Levies Act, 2015 (Act 899), which has resulted in astronomical and unjustified increases in prices of petroleum products.

 

The Public Utilities and Regulatory Commission (PURC) increased electricity and water tariffs by 59.2 percent and 67.2 percent respectively.

 

Fuel prices at the pumps have also been increased by between 22 percent and 27 percent following the passage of the Energy Sector Levy (ESL) by Parliament in December 2015.


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Many Ghanaians and businesses have described the recent increases as harsh and insensitive.

 

King Ali Awudu, Acting President of the Coalition, who was addressing the press in Accra yesterday, kicked against the increases, saying they would aggravate the already harsh economic conditions faced by workers of Ghana.

 

“Why all these increases in such hard times,” he said.

 

Ali Awudu said the increase in utility tariffs came as a shock to teachers, explaining that Organized Labour had earlier met PURC and agreed on an increment that should not be over 50 percent for both electricity and water.

He said in spite of all the increases, public sector wages was increased to only 10 percent at a time when inflation rate was 17.4 percent.

“The refusal of government to reduce the utility tariffs as well withdraw the ‘killer’ energy sector law leaves us with no option but to call on all our members and all teachers in the country to boycott school on Wednesday, 20, January and join the demonstration,” Ali Awudu said.

By Cephas Larbi

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