Graduate teachers begin indefinite strike

Graduate teachers across the country are beginning an indefinite strike from today, April 4, 2018 to demand the payment of their salary arrears.

The National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) at a press conference said since 2013, their salary adjustments and promotions have not been effected and until that is done, they will not return to the classroom.

President of NAGRAT, Angel Carbonu said members of the Association, are unhappy and incensed with the manner in which they have been treated, Joy News’ Afua Evans-Chinery reported.

“The disquiet of our members have reached its peak over the broken promises and deceit regarding the nonpayment of these arrears by the government.”

Mr Carbonu said this government’s promise of paying all the arrears when it took office in 2017 has remained just that, “little did we know that even the inclusion of it in the 2017 budget was only a red herring since not even a pesewa was paid to any teacher.”

The teachers regret that in spite of the litany of promises and numerous validation exercises and agreements signed, none has yielded any positive results to the benefit of the teacher.

“Instead, what we see are orchestrations, tactics, and manipulations employed by the ministry of finance and the government for that matter to drag its feet and possibly refuse to pay the arrears at all,” Mr Carbonu noted.

For him, the teachers have done all that is required of them to get their monies released but at every twist and turn, they hit the wall.

They have therefore decided to embark on the strike and “all NAGRAT members at the pre-tertiary level should lay down their tools and abstain from work.

And that when the senior high school reopens, nobody should expect our members to be present,” he added.

The teachers say have had it and are no longer prepared to engage any stakeholders on the issue and urged all members to be resolute in pursuing what is rightfully theirs.

They advised heads of institutions and departments not to yield to any so-called pressure from above in an attempt to intimidate teachers in the pursuit of their lawful and legitimate demands because “such actions will be met with full resistance.

“We will abstain from work, we will not participate in any duties until such a time that the government pays the arrears,” Mr Carbonu stressed.