The National President of the Technical University Teachers Association (TUTAG) has chided the Greater Accra Regional Chapter for calling off the ongoing strike.
The Greater Accra Chapter has served notice it will return to work today [Monday] irrespective of the stance of its national executives.
Speaking to Citi News, National President of TUTAG, Dr Solomon Keelson said the comment by the Greater Accra Chapter must be disregarded as the strike is in full force across the 16 regions of the country.
“Accra Chair has said that if National doesn’t call off the strike today, Monday, they would call it off. I think that is in bad faith. What he should have rather done is to initiate and even support us to get the people together. We are working hard to get our people together and if possible call an emergency meeting because we can’t call the strike without the consent of all of these people who matter from the various chapters,” he complained.
“And so not consulting anybody and going there is worrying. I don’t know whether that view that he has presented is even a view from the Accra chapter itself or it’s coming from him as a person. That must be disregarded because we are doing everything possible to put the people together even before our Thursday congress in Tamale. For him to just jump the gun and say that Accra alone will do that, I don’t know whether Accra is part of our Union or not, or whether Accra now wants to separate from the Union or they still want to be part of the Union.”
TUSAAG and TUTAG are currently on an indefinite strike in protest of the non-payment of allowances due their members following the conversion of polytechnics to technical universities.
According to TUSAAG, the amount received by its members in December is below allowances paid to colleagues in other public universities who hold similar positions as lecturers.
The leaders of TUSAAG have vowed not to call off the strike till the government complies with the National Labour Commission’s (NLC) ruling to pay their members the agreed allowances.
The ongoing strike by TUTAG comes as a repetition of one they embarked on in October and December 2019.
According to them, the government has “refused to fully comply” with the ruling by the National Labour Commission (NLC) to ensure that members of the association started receiving allowances due them from December 2019, January 2020 and February 2020.
They have also vowed to only call off the strike “upon the fulfilment of the National Labour Commission ruling on the 28th of October 2019”.
But the Greater Accra Regional Chapter of the Technical University Teachers Association of Ghana (TUTAG) hinted of plans to return to work today [Monday] regardless of the stance of its national executives.
“The national executives have the prerogative to speak on behalf of the union… but for me, I am waiting on them until [Monday morning]. If they don’t, I will let Accra [TUTAG] start work,” the Greater Accra Regional Chairman of TUTAG, Dr. Ibrahim Zubeiru, told Citi News.
NLC directs Unions to call off strike
The National Labour Commission (NLC) on Friday asked TUTAG to call off its strike, giving the assurance that the government would be working to migrate their qualified members to the single spine pay structure and pay them their allowances by January 29.
This came after the Commission met with representatives of TUTAG, Ministries of Finance, Education, Employment and Labour Relations, Fair Wages and Salaries Commission and the Controller and Accountant ‘s General’s Department on the way forward to resolve the current impasse.
In a statement, the NLC also assured that TUTAG members in institutions that have submitted or yet to submit their data to the National Council for Tertiary Education (NCTE) will be paid their allowances as required.
But members of TUSAAG say their strike is ongoing despite the ruling by the National Labour Commission (NLC) asking them to call off the industrial action.
The National President of TUSAAG, Edem Honu said they are waiting to receive a copy of the NLC ruling before the National Executive Committee takes a decision on the matter.