NUGS appeal to UTAG, Senior Staff to suspend strike

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The National Union of Ghana Students (NUGS) has appealed to the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG) and Senior Staff Association of Universities of Ghana to reconsider their strike.

According to NUGS, although the demands of the two unions are legitimate, they should consider the interest of Ghanaian students.

Members of UTAG and the Senior Staff Association of Universities of Ghana are set to begin an indefinite strike from today, Monday, August 2, 2021.

In a communiqué on July 30, UTAG directed all its members to comply with the strike.

UTAG members on all campuses are to withdraw from teaching and other activities like examinations, invigilation, marking of examination scripts, and the processing of examination results.

But NUGS in a press statement issued on Monday, August 2, 2021, urged the two unions to reconsider their decision as a “mark of good faith towards students”.

“The National Union of Ghana Students appreciates UTAG and SSA-UoG for the patience and sacrifice of their membership towards service rendered to Ghanaian students and the nation at large. We believe strongly that the answers UTAG and SSA-UoG are seeking from the government are for the right reasons.”

“That notwithstanding, we disagree with the strike approach, considering its effect on students, especially within the abnormal times we find ourselves in and the earlier obstruction of academic work by the global shutdown. UTAG and SSA-UoG must as an act of good faith towards students and the government avoid an entrenched position in all dialogues to address their concerns.”

NUGS in the statement said: “We appeal to our lecturers to stay in the classroom for the sake of the future generation as they continue to negotiate with the appropriate quarters since Ghanaian students shouldn’t always be at the receiving end.”

UTAG demands 

UTAG has been asking the government to restore the conditions of service agreed upon with the government in 2012.

The 2012 conditions of service pegged the Basic plus Market Premium of a lecturer at $2,084.42.

UTAG has complained that the current arrangement has reduced its members’ basic premiums to $997.84.

The Universities’ Senior Staff on the other hand has been asking for the award of market premiums and non-basic allowances, as well as the finalisation of negotiations of their conditions of service.

The association earlier accused the government of “contemptuous and total disregard to the National Labour Commission’s (NLC) directives on January 28, 2021, upon hearing from both parties to resolve all our concerns within a three-month stipulated period, which also regrettably elapsed on March 31, 2021, repugnantly.”

Below is the full statement from NUGS

STRIKE ACTIONS : UNIVERSITY TEACHERS ASSOCIATION OF GHANA ( UTAG ) AND SENIOR STAFF ASSOCIATION- UNIVERSITIES OF GHANA ( SSA-UoG ) MUST RETURN TO THE CLASSROOM AND CONTINUE WITH NEGOTIATIONS BUT GOVERNMENT MUST ACT SWIFTLY IN THEIR RESPONSE TO THEIR DEMANDS – NATIONAL UNION OF GHANA STUDENTS ( NUGS ) ADVICES PARTIES

1. With reference to the press release dated 28th and 30th July 2021, from both the University Teachers Association Of Ghana ( UTAG ) and SeniorStaff Association – Universities of Ghana ( SSA-UoG ) respectively, registering their displeasure towards government’s continuous delay in honouring the full terms of their negotiations.

2.Both UTAG and SSA-UoG states emphatically in their releases that the government has always failed to respect the Rules of Engagement agreed by both parties to guide the negotiations resulting to an indefinite suspension slated for Monday, 2nd of August 2021.

3. The National Union of Ghana Students appreciates UTAG and SSA-UoG for the patience and sacrifice of their membership towards service rendered to Ghanaian students and the nation at large. We believe strongly that the answers UTAG and SSA-UoG are seeking from the government are for the right reasons.

4. That notwithstanding, We disagree with the strike approach considering its effect on students, especially within the abnormal times we find ourselves in and the earlier obstruction of academic work by the global shutdown. UTAG and SSA-UoG must as an act of good faith towards students and government avoid an entrenched position in all dialogues to address their concerns.

5. We call on government to;

I. Respect all the Rules of Engagement agreed upon by parties

II.Reach a compromise which will satisfy all parties as soon as possible.

6. We appeal to our lecturers to stay in the classroom for the sake of the future generation as they continue to negotiate with the appropriate quarters since Ghanaian students shouldn’t always be at the receiving end.

6. We implore all students to remain calm as the Union engages all parties involved for an amicable resolution.

Signed

Yiadom Boakye Emmanuel ( NUGS President )
024 697 0434

Kyeremeh Oppong Daniel ( Sec.for Education )
054 316 9495

Julius Anthony ( Gen. Secretary )

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