The Takoradi Polytechnic chapter of the Polytechnic Teachers Association of Ghana, POTAG, has served notice it members will embark on a sit-down strike if Government fails to release monies for the payment of their 2012/2013 annual book and research allowance by the end of September this year.
The decision was taken after a meeting on Tuesday September 10. The local POTAG President, Michael Appiah told journalists there is a general feeling among members that government is “unnecessarily and unduly delaying the allowance with the excuse that there are no funds”. He says although the 2012/2013 academic year has ended, lecturers are uncertain as to when payment will be done.
“Takoradi Polytechnic POTAG Local wishes to appeal to Government and the Ministry of Finance to as a matter of urgency, expedite action on the payment of this allowance latest by end of September 2013, otherwise we will advice ourselves” Michael Appiah noted.
“Takoradi Polytechnic POTAG Local wishes to again bring to the attention of Government, the Ministry of Finance, and the National Council for Tertiary Education(NTCE) that tension has mounted to a crescendo on most , if not all Polytechnic campuses due to the delay in payment of the 2012/20113 annual book and research allowance. In spite of the fact that this allowance relates to 2012/2013 academic year which has ended, we are uncertain when the Ministry of Finance will sanction the payment”
“It must be noted that lecturers rely on this allowance to embark upon research activities, acquire up-to-date books, teaching and other learning materials to update their knowledge and enhance their teaching skills. It is rather sad and ironical that though the nation seeks quality education for citizens, government neglects the very people who ensure we achieve this goal by dragging its feet when it comes to the payment of salaries and allowances” he lamented.
Mr. Appiah rubbished suggestions that lecturers were not carrying out any meaningful research and so deserve no allowance.
“That notion I must say it’s rather an ignoramus opinion. In fact it is rather on the lower side if you [know] the monies that are paid to us. So Government should rather think of increasing it rather than saying they are going to scrap it. But we haven’t gotten to that stage yet. When it gets to that point, POTAG knows what to do” he stated.
POTAG’s concerns come after members of the University Teachers Association, UTAG made similar demands.