-As Jubilee House Elites Enjoy Over 60% Pay Rise
Major teacher unions in Ghana are up-in-arms against the Akufo Addo administration for agreeing a measly 4% pay rise, while the Jubilee House, Ministers, and Deputy Ministers have seen and an average of 60% hike in their salaries and allowances.
The unions including the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT), and the Coalition of Concerned Teachers (CCT) are demanding a better pay package.
After months of haggling between the government and the teacher unions, the government said it can only increase the pay of teachers by 4% in 2021 and 7 % in 2022.
While these negotiations were ongoing, President Akufo had appointed an Article 71 Emolument Committee headed by Professor Yaa Ntiamoa-Baidu which recommended massive par increases for the infamous Article 71 Officeholders.
The Committee also recommended fat salaries to be paid to the First and Second Ladies, sparking widespread public outrage. First lady Rebecca Akufo Addo and Second Lady Samira Bawumia were forced by the public anger to cough up the fat salaries they had received since 2017.
Speaking at the gathering of teachers at the 6th Quadrennial and 53rd Greater Regional Delegates Conference of GNAT, the Greater Accra Regional Chairman, Ransford Lolih, said there was “so much apprehension and agitation” amongst members of the unions over the paltry salary increases by the government.
“The anger building up amongst our members must be taken seriously if we want a congenial atmosphere for teaching and learning in our schools,” Mr. Lolih said.
“I will call on leadership to take a second look at the level of increment announced for public sector workers for the next two years.”
“Our problems are many, and we urge the rep of government here to listen to them, especially that of GNAT so that there will be a relief for teachers,” NAGRAT’s Greater Accra Regional Chairman, Rene Senyo Kwamikokor stated in unison.
Aware of the concerns by unions, the Secretary-General of the Trades Union Congress, Dr. Yaw Baah, urged workers to be calm at a separate press conference.
“The outcome was not what we had expected, but it could have been worse, given the economic challenges and the stance of government towards pay rise, particularly in 2021,” Dr. Baah noted.
The TUC, which negotiated with the government as part of organised labour, was able to ensure that, within the next two years, the government shall not declare any public sector worker redundant.
But the leadership of the TUC has been blamed for being in bed with the government and receiving juicy incentives that made them unable to negotiate better for the disgruntled teachers.