The government says although the four teacher unions demanding the payment of the cost of living allowance have legitimate concerns, the timing is problematic.
The Deputy Employment and Labour Relations Minister, Bright Wireko-Brobby admits that the current economic conditions are dire, hence the teachers should bear with the government.
The four teacher unions, who are on strike over the payment of a cost of living allowance, have vowed to continue with the industrial action despite government’s persuasion. A meeting with government ended inconclusively yesterday.
Speaking to Citi News, Dr. Wireko-Brobby expressed optimism that their plea will persuade the teachers to return to the classrooms.
“Government is in a very dire situation, so we explained to them that the times are not too good, and therefore we were pleading with them. We recognize the fact that they have a legitimate concern, but the timing is not too good, and therefore we have heard them and they should go back to the classrooms while we continue to look at our books and see what we can do for them. They have said they will go and do more consultations and come back to us, but they wish that if we also have some definitive positions, we should call them, and they are ready anytime to meet with us.”
The President of the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT), Angel Carbonu, says the striking teacher unions will not fall for the use of pressure to get them to return to the classrooms.
He said the teacher unions are poised to remain on strike until the government pays them the 20% cost of living allowance.
Speaking on Eyewitness News, Mr. Carbonu said should a court action be triggered against the teacher unions to compel them to rescind their strike decision, they will fight to set aside the injunction.
“If they go to court to get an injunction, we will organize, go to court and set that injunction aside. When you go to court ex-parte, you have not given opportunity for the judge to listen to the other group. This time, if they go to court ex-parte, we will ask our legal people the next day to go to court to set that ex-parte injunction aside,” he said.