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General News of Friday, 13 December 2019

Source: Peace FM

Labour Commission and GES 'adding insult to injury' - President of Coalition of Concern Teachers

The Teacher Unions who have embarked on a nationwide strike have called the bluff of the Labour Commission and the Ghana Education Service.

According to the striking teachers, they will not return to the classroom until their legacy arrears are paid.

Speaking on Okay FM’s 'Ade Akye Abia' programme, President of the Coalition of Concern Teachers, King Ali Awudu explained that the position of the Ghana Education Service and their utterances are only 'adding insult to injury'.

"We have made arrangements to meet with the Minister for Employment and Labour relations to discuss our issues which may soften our stance, but if the Ghana Education Service will go this way then things will be worse in the coming days," he warned.

"However, we will still be meeting with the necessary stakeholders and possibly return to the classroom," he added.

Touching on the ruling of the Labour Commission which described their strike as illegal, he noted that the Commission has not been fair to them.

The Ghana Education Service (GES) says it will not be stampeded into paying illegal money to teachers under the guise of legacy arrears.

According to the service, it had saved the government GH¢11.3 million after detecting some anomalies in the payment of the arrears and that there was the need to do more to verify the genuineness of the payments before the affected teachers were paid.

The Director-General of the GES, Prof. Kwasi Opoku-Amankwa, said it was unfortunate that with all the effort being made by the government, having paid 95 per cent of the affected staff, the teachers still insisted on embarking on the strike.

To prove its case, Prof. Opoku-Amankwa said, the GES would publish the list of its staff who benefited from the legacy arrears.

The Controller and Accountant General’s Department (CAGD) says the last batch of 1,200 staff of the Ghana Education Service (GES) who qualify for the legacy arrears would be paid by Thursday, December 19, 2019.

That figure will bring to a total of 88,756, staff qualified to be paid under the arrears.

So far, a total of 87,566 names validated and approved for payment have been paid, Graphic Online has gathered.

Last Monday, members of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) and the Coalition of Concerned Teachers-Ghana (CCT-GH) began a nationwide strike due to what they said were delays in the payment of legacy arrears which spanned between 2012-2016.

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