Awudu King Ali (middle) speaking at the press conference
The Coalition of Concerned Teachers Ghana (CCT-GH) has kicked against a policy introduced by Seth Terpker, Finance Minister to pay only three months of teachers’ salary arrears irrespective of the total number of months they have worked for government.
According to the Coalition, the current pay policy and also the non-payment of salaries to newly posted and recruited teachers were clearly against the laws of Ghana.
Awudu King Ali, acting president of the Coalition, said at a press conference in Accra yesterday that the Finance Minister made the new policy without consultation and secretly sent a letter to that effect to all Metropolitan Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) and the Controller & Accountant-General.
“We, teachers, initially thought it is a policy to affect all public sector workers but little did we know that it is a ploy to deny teachers what is due them,” he said.
King Ali said Terpker’s policy was aimed at disenfranchising teachers and jeopardizing education in Ghana.
He gave government up to February 29, 2016 to pay all arrears owed teachers or face a strike action.
“If by February 29, 2016, all salary arrears, vehicle maintenance allowance, incremental credit arrears and transfer grants are not paid, then we will declare that all teachers should stay out of the class in a massive strike action to press home our demands,” King Ali said.
He said the Ministers of Finance, Education and the Ghana Education Service (GES) were flouting Article 24 (1) of the 1992 Constitution for refusing to pay teachers, stating that the same agencies had also blatantly ignored Section 67 and 68 of the Labour law (Act 651) 2003.
The Coalition threatened to proceed to court to seek interpretation of the law as to whether it was lawful for government to employ its citizens and not pay them for many years.
By Cephas Larbi