The Eastern Region branch of the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) has joined calls for a nationwide strike over failure on the part of the government to pay teachers a 20% cost of living allowance (COLA).
The branch Regional Chairman of NAGRAT Godwin Awoonor -Yevu addressing a press conference on Friday, indicated that teachers are living on “life support ” as a result of the unbearable hardship in the country.
He said the “cost of living in Ghana today is rising with the speed of light and affecting our members.
He posited that the “prices of fuel, goods and services continue to rise, the introduction of new taxes had worsened the already bad situation, yet the teacher’s salary remains the same. Between January and now, fuel prices have increased by over 50%”.
Goodwin Awoonor -Yevu stated that government’s failure to listen to Labour Unions’ call for 20% COLA to cushion public service workers since 2021 had brought the teacher union to its wit’s end.
“We can no longer bear the pain. We, therefore, demand of our national leadership that ” if at the end of June 2022, our COLA is not heeded to, they have no option than to pay heed to clarion calls of our members to lay down our tools”.
He said a member of the association would abandon the students preparing to write the 2022 West Africa Secondary Schools Certificate Examination (WASSCE) regardless of the negative implication if the intended strike action happens.
“The children (WASCE Students ) we consider their plight. As teachers, we took them from form one up to form three and up to now as far as the government has not listened and if that will be the case we want the government to look up to the WASSCE students and then listen to our call and then give us what we need so that we the teachers we can avoid laying down out tools. If it does at the end of this month, we will not listen to anybody irrespective of the WASSCE students who will be writing their exams we will continue to lay down our tools until the government listens”