Colleges of Education closed down over CETAG strike

BY: Graphic.com.gh
Dr Mathew Opoku Prempeh, Minister of Education
Dr Mathew Opoku Prempeh, Minister of Education

Colleges of Education have been directed to close down and allow students to go home following the more than 25 days strike by tutors.

Tutors at the various Colleges of Education have been on strike since the beginning of November 2018 as a result of a disagreement with government over their market premium, book and research allowances.

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The National Council for Tertiary Education (NCTE) in consultation with the Ministry of Education on Friday directed all Principals of 46 Colleges of Education to release their students to go home.

The Director of Communications at the Ministry of Education, Mr Vincent Ekow Assafuah, who confirmed the development to Graphic Online said the colleges would reopen after the tutors impasse with government is resolved.

“Until we are able to deal with the issue, the students will be home,” he said, adding that government was willing to resolve the issue with CETAG.


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Mr Assafuah told Graphic Online that as part of government’s efforts at resolving the impasse, the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission (FWSC) met the leadership of CETAG on Thursday, November 29, 2018 and asked them to go back to the classroom as the government intended to resolve the issue amicably.

However, he said, the CETAG leadership said they will only call off the strike after their November salaries, book and research allowances have been paid.

He added that government was unwilling to pay their November salaries and allowances because governments says the strike illegal.

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Mr Assafuah said CETAG is demanding over 100 per cent increment in their Market Premium, book and research allowances, however, government is offering to pay 20 per cent, as it has not been captured in the 2018 budget.

Background

CETAG has been negotiating their market premium, book and research allowances with the government since 2012.

Following a disagreement, CETAG declared a strike at the beginning of November 2018, which has affected all the 46 public colleges of education in the country.

As a result government has put a freeze on their November allowances and salaries for not working for a period of over three weeks.

CETAG has described the decision by government to freeze their salaries and allowances as unlawful.

Since Colleges of Education were upgraded to the status of universities in 2016, tutors at the colleges have been demanding conditions of service similar to that of their colleagues in the universities.