Technical University Teachers embarks on strike

By
Eunice Hilda Ampomah, GNA

Accra, Sept. 13, GNA –
The Technical University Teachers Association of Ghana (TUTAG) has declared a
sit down strike with immediate effect following refusal of Government to offer
them the same conditions of service as lecturers in public universities.

A statement copied to
the Ghana News Agency and signed by Dr Solomon A. Keelson, National President
of TUTAG, explained that the Association had been denied the required
conditions of service for Public Universities since it was upgraded from
Polytechnics to Technical Universities.

“We submitted a letter
dated August 29, 2018 notifying the National Labour Commission (NLC) of our
intention to embark upon industrial action to press home our demand for
immediate migration.

“We subsequently
received a letter from the NLC dated August 30, 2018 summoning us to a hearing
scheduled for Wednesday September 12, 2018. We attended upon this summons but
the NLC failed or neglected to sit and hear our case, and left us stranded at
the offices of the Commission”.

The statement
explained that it is in view of this, that the association has declared an
indefinite sit-down strike, having followed the requirements of the labours
laws of Ghana.

It explained that
there exist conditions of service that apply in public universities in the
country and as it is the standard practice, staff of newly established public
universities were migrated onto such existing conditions of service.

“Such migration is
legal, logical, fair, right and just since the prevailing conditions of service
apply to the category of employees referred to in the agreed terms, for which
we stand qualified,” the statement said.

The statement noted
that even when there is variance in relation to the conditions of service as
provided for, and enjoyed by Technical Universities, they had continued to
fulfil their duties, responsibilities and obligations to the Universities.

It said: “The failure
of our employer so far, to migrate us onto the requisite pay structure that
pertains to public universities is hurtful in several respects and tensions on
the various campuses have reached a crescendo”.

It noted that the
Association rejects the preconditions set by the Ministry of Education through
the National Council for Tertiary Education after a letter of request was sent
to the sector to expedite action along with the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission
to remedy the situation.

The statement
explained that the preconditions which are enactment of statuses, adoption of
approved scheme of service and conduct of a comprehensive staff audit deemed as
necessary by the Ministry before migrating TUTAG onto the conditions of service
are just excuses to delay the process.

“The continuous delay
in migrating staff of Technical Universities onto the conditions of service
that apply in public universities is unfair and unjust because the establishment
of Technical Universities also means upgrade in corresponding conditions of
service commensurate with the new status.

“However, since 2016
we have been public universities by stature and responsibilities but continue
to receive Polytechnics conditions of service, unlike the case of the
University of Professional Studies and University of Winneba, where various
staff were immediately migrated onto the conditions of service of public
universities”.

The statement revealed
that due to the delay in migrating the Technical Universities onto the Public
Universities’ single spine salary structure, there are discrepancies in reward
to staff.

It stressed that, as a
result, most of the lecturers with PhD and other Professionals, who are
disgruntled with the situation continue to leave for the other public
universities.

The statement noted
that, the implications is that any further delay to migrate the staff could
lead to huge loss of a lot of qualified lecturers to the other established
Public Universities.

It added that those
who choose to stay would also suffer financial loses and it will go a long way
to affect negatively, the President’s vision of industrialising Ghana through
Technical Vocational Education and Training.

GNA

FA/KKY

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