‘You’ve waited 4yrs, why not wait for 2 more days?’ – Minister asks striking teachers

Deputy Finance Minister Abena Osei Asare has condemned members of the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) for declaring a strike over salary arrears which government has already committed to pay by Friday.

The graduate teachers declared an indefinite strike Wednesday April 4 to demand the payment of their outstanding salaries among other arrears.

At a news conference, NAGRAT stated that their salary adjustments and promotions have not been effected since 2012 and vowed that until that is done, they will not resume work.

READ: NAGRAT declares indefinite strike over unpaid arrears

But hours after the declaration of the strike, the Ministry of Finance announced the release of some GHS40 million to settle arrears owed some teachers.

In a letter dated 29th March 2018, which was released on April 4, 2018, the Ministry indicated that amount would cover some 2,566 Ghana Education Service employees.

Commenting on the strike Thursday on Onua FM’s Yen Nsempa Ms. Osei-Asare said government had engaged all stakeholders on the arrears and assured them of payment soon, hence surprised at the position of NAGRAT.

“If you have waited for four years, why don’t you wait for just two days? They will be paid by the 6th of April because that is what all the stakeholders had agreed. It is just two days away”, Ms. Osei Asare said.

She assured that “all those who have been validated will receive their pay by the 6th of April. Everybody who has been validated will be paid”.

The Deputy Minister told host of the show, Bright Kwesi Asempa, that the teachers ought to commend the government for its efforts in resolving their grievances instead of embarking on a strike.

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“Let us condemn their strike because their strike is not in the right direction,” she said.

But NAGRAT insists it would not return to the classroom until the amount hit their accounts.

By Kweku Antwi-Otoo|3news.com|Ghana