General News of Thursday, 10 July 2014
A Deputy Minister of Education, Hon. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has described the strike by POTAG as an unfair treatment against Polytechnic students across the country.
Registering his displeasure with the attitude of the Polytechnic Teachers Association of Ghana (POTAG), he stressed that their action in the long run is affecting students on campus.
POTAG has embarked on a nationwide strike because government is unable to address their grievances. The Association is demanding government pays their book and research allowance.
According to the Polytechnic teachers, government has failed to pay up their arrears for 2013/2014, hence their action.
In November last year, the Government of Ghana announced that it would be scrapping the allowances and replace it with a Research and Innovation Fund.
In February, a sum of Ghc3.75 million representing 25% of the earmarked funds was released for an account to be opened for the establishment of the fund.
Despite these attempts, POTAG went on a strike.
Addressing the issue on Peace FM's Kokrokoo, Mr. Ablakwa insisted that the government has remitted the arrears, stating emphatically that it does not owe the teachers.
Therefore, to him, the strike "was a pre-emptive strike. And in that pre-emptive strike, our students have suffered and I think it’s not fair. Especially as they have confirmed that they are receiving their salaries.”