Gov’t is determined to find satisfactory solution to UTAG strike – Akufo-Addo

University of Ghana is the first public university established in Ghana

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has assured that the government is determined to find solution to the issues that resulted in the strike by the Universities Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG).

He noted that the best form of negotiation is for both parties to exhibit good faith.

“In the wake of the recent six weeks strike by UTAG, the government is determined to find a satisfactory solution to this impasse and ensure that the academic calendar is not substantially derailed.

“The best form of negotiation are those in which both parties of the dispute exhibit good faith within the context of what is affordable and equitable. I continue to hope the government will help bring this impasse to an end so that the education of our young people can resume in solemnity. I assure you of government’s commitment to addressing your concerns at all times. I appeal to organised labour to give enthusiastic support and cooperation to government’s programme on economic recovery,” Mr Akufo-Addo said during the opening of the 2022 Labour Conference in Kwahu, Eastern Region on Monday February 28.

Meanwhile, the National Union of Ghana Students (NUGS) has expressed disappointment in the decision by the University of Ghana branch of the UTAG not to teach.

NUGS in a tweet said “The resolution of the UG-UTAG not to comply with the Business and Executive Committee’s schedule for teaching and learning is rather unfortunate. Students cannot continue to bear the brunt of this strike action. If the teaching is no where in sight, shut down the school.”

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UG-UTAG has served notice members will not return to the classroom Monday, February 28 as directed by the National Executive Committee and scheduled by the University’s Business and Executive Committee.

The decision according to the UG UTAG is because the chapter and other chapters which form the majority voted to reject the NEC decision to suspend the strike action which commenced on January 10.

For this reason, the UG chapter is of the view that the strike action may resume soon and for that matter would not like to inconvenience students by starting lectures and going back on strike.

They also have indicated they would want to see the outcome of the ongoing engagement with government which is expected to end on March 4 before they return to the classroom.

A letter signed by chapter secretary, Prof. Ransford Gyampo, and addressed to the Business and Executive Committee of the University said they are unable to comply with the decision to resume lectures.

Below is the full statement:

Outcome of Emergency Meeting of UG-UTAG on 27th February, 2022

 Dear Registrar,
An emergency meeting was called to discuss your release communicating the University’s Business and Executive Committee’s decision for teaching and academic work to commence on Monday 28th February 2022, in anticipation of the ratification of the UTAG-National Executive Committee’s decision to suspend the industrial action upon by UTAG since 10th January 2022.

After extensive deliberations, they directed me to bring to your attention, their inability to comply with the decision of the Business and Executive Committee for the resumption of teaching on Monday 28th February 2022. This was based on the following reasons:

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First, the UTAG-National Executive Committee’s decision to suspend the strike, has been rejected by majority of members of public universities in Ghana, and it will not be prudent to commence teaching for few days, only to resume the strike again, given the toll this may likely impose on students and parents.

Secondly, given the trust deficit between UTAG and government, members indicated their preference to see the outcome of the talks/engagement (not negotiations) initiated by the government to resolve the impasse (which is expected to end on March 4, 2022), before they return to the classroom.

Kindly be notified accordingly.

Thank you.

Prof Ransford E.V. Gyampo, Secretary UG-UTAG

By Laud Nartey||Ghana


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