The Colleges of Education Teachers Association of Ghana (CETAG), has called off its one-month-old strike following another intervention by the National Labour Commission (NLC).
The resumption of work is to pave way “for the commencement of negotiations as directed by the NLC,” a brief statement from CETAG said.
CETAG had been on strike over the failure of the government to pay them their Interim Market Premiums and Book and Research allowance.
The teachers insist that they’re now equal to their colleagues in other public tertiary institutions since the Colleges were upgraded to tertiary status, and so they must earn the same benefits.
The strike affected all 46 Colleges of Education, which were shut down indefinitely once the strike went beyond the 21-day threshold.
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The Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations, had said it was shocked by CETAG’s stance.
Previous negotiations between the association and other stakeholders including the Ministry of Education, Fair Wages and Salaries Commission and the National Council on Tertiary Education (NCTE) yielded no positive results.
The NCTE argued that CETAG did not have the right to declare a strike when negotiations were ongoing.
CETAG was also accused of being unreasonable and failing to present itself for negotiations on the matter, drawing out the impasse.
But prior to the latest development, CETAG had shown signs of compromising on its stiff stance.
The National Secretary of CETAG, Nathan Ohene Gyan, said his outfit was pleased with NLC’s intervention.
“We have been very clear and quite explicit in our language in what is expected of the two parties, we believe in the rule of law and the word that was given by the Commission is well with us. There is an element of compulsion in there which every one of us would have to respect.”
Though students are likely to breathe a sigh of relief, it remains unclear how this development will affect the academic calendar.
The National President of the Teacher Trainees Association of Ghana (TTAG), Anthony Dadzie, suggested that the academic calendar be re-structured in favour of the students.
“The only thing we are looking at is the academic calendar and how we are going to cover the period that has been wasted. They have been on strike for about one month, we really want to come back to class. The semester would have to be extended or restructured because we will not have to be disadvantaged,” he said.