The Colleges of Education Teachers Association of Ghana (CETAG) says they are not perturbed about the decision by the Ministry of Education to freeze the August salaries of its members provided its demands are met.
A letter from the Ghana Tertiary Education Council (GTEC) directing the Controller and Accountant-General not to process salaries of CETAG members for the month of August says the Ministry of Education has directed it to do so.
“We write at the instance of the Honourable Minister of Education, requesting you NOT to pay monthly salary and allowances for the month of August, 2023 to the Teaching Staff of all 46
Colleges of Education (CETAG),” a statement issued by GTEC Monday, August 21, 2023, indicated.
“However, any arrears before August, 2023 should be validated and paid,” portions of the statement indicated.
The directive follows the Association’s decision not to return to the classroom after government’s plea with them to suspend their strike.
But, president of CETAG, Prince Obeng-Himah, noted members’ inability to honour an invitation by Education minister Monday, August 21, was not deliberate. He has been telling OnuaOnline such incident has happened before and so far as they got what they wanted, it was okay for them.
“This is not the first time this is happening. It has occurred before. In 2018 when we started the B-Ed programme we demanded that it could not be implemented without adding anything to the teachers’ conditions of service whilst the demands required further studies from teachers to fit into the system.
“At the time we were making a lot of sense but the ministry froze our salaries because we were on strike, even though the National Labour Commission had declared the strike illegal,” he told Akoma FM’s Ibrahim Abubakar Tuesday, August 22, 2023.
The Colleges of Education Teachers Association of Ghana (CETAG) served notice of their intentions to withdraw services effective August 1, 2023.
Their decision followed the non-compliance of the government to implement the National Labour Commission’s (NLC) Arbitral Award Orders and the negotiated conditions of service since May 2, 2023.
In January this year, teachers at the 46 Colleges of Education across the country embarked on an indefinite strike after the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission protracted negotiations for new conditions of service for more than a year.
The industrial action was eventually called off following interventions by the National Labour Commission which subsequently saw the introduction of compulsory arbitral orders for new conditions of service for CETAG.
However, since negotiations between the parties failed to materialize, CETAG embarked on a strike again in August 1 causing the government to withhold their salary for the period in perspective.