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TEWU strike slows down work in public varsities

BY: Caroline Boateng
Mr Raphael Apaaya - General Secretary of TEWU

Members of the Teachers and Educational Workers Union (TEWU) yesterday commenced their nationwide strike with the withdrawal of services.

The national leadership of TEWU threatened to withdraw its services until the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission (FWSC) corrected disparities in the placement of members on the public sector salary structure.

In declaring the strike, the General Secretary of TEWU, Mr Raphael Apaaya, said after several meetings with Vice- Chancellors Ghana (VCG) and the FWSC, with several letters written and the presentation of facts in support of the disparities between the last positions on the senior staff scale and the first positions on the junior staff scale, the union was disappointed at the lack of response from the FWSC.

He said the demand was for the FWSC to implement the recommendations in the report of a committee.

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Accra campuses
In Accra, Yakubu Abdul-Jalil reports that as a result of the strike, the campuses of the University of Ghana, Legon, the University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA) and the Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ) were unusually quiet yesterday.

Tamale
The strike is in full force at the Central Administration of the University for Development Studies (UDS) in Tamale, reports Samuel Duodu.

Its impact is already being felt at the UDS, as all official vehicles of the university have been grounded because all drivers are members of TEWU.

Also taking part in the strike are security officers, some secretarial staff and cleaners at the university who have no choice but to comply with directives from their leaders.

The drivers’ room and security posts at the university were virtually empty when this reporter visited the Central Administration of the UDS around 1:30 p.m.

Sunyani
From Sunyani, Kwame Asiedu Marfo reports that the members of TEWU at the University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR) in Sunyani have withdrawn their services as part of the nationwide strike.

Members in the Estate Unit of the university, comprising cleaners, labourers, drivers, grounds and maintenance staff, have withdrawn their services, with the exception of those providing essential services such as security.

The University Relations Officer and Head of Public Affairs, Mr Ben Appiah-Kubi, explained that the university reopened last Friday, January 15, 2016 for the second semester.

He said the strike had not affected the registration of students, since it was being done online.

He said the authorities were yet to see the effect of the strike on the activities of the university, since it had just reopened.

Issues
A committee was formed in May 2013, made up of the Human Resource directors of the public universities and representatives of TEWU to look into issues raised.

The final report of the committee on the issues of TEWU in relation to its placement on the Single Spine Salary Structure (SSSS) was submitted to the FWSC in June 2015.

Since the submission of the report, the FWSC has refused to carry out its part of the agreement, which is implementing the recommendations.

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