Regional News of 2014-06-03

Polytechnic rectors want POTAG to call off strike

The Conference of Rectors of Polytechnics (CORPS) says it is working behind the scenes to get the Polytechnic Teachers Association of Ghana (POTAG) to call off its strike.

It said once the strike was called off the academic calendar would be extended to make up for the period lost.

The Chairman of CORPS, Prof. G.K.S Aflakpui, who made this known to the Daily Graphic, noted that “we are playing a background role” since it was the National Labour Commission (NLC), Fair Wages and Salaries Commission (FWSC) and the Ministry of Education that had the mandate to negotiate with the teachers.

Polytechnic teachers in the country have withdrawn their services to back demands for the payment of their 2013/2014 book and research allowance.

A-Poly branch

Meanwhile, the Accra Polytechnic Local POTAG Vice Chairman, Mr Jones Ntiamoah, told the Daily Graphic that unless members of the association saw a written commitment from the government to pay members book and research allowance, they would not call off the industrial action.

According to him, POTAG understood that the country was having some economic challenges and so would be glad if the government could give a written assurance that the money would be paid at a particular time.

Strike resuscitated

The Vice Chairman said the strike had been resuscitated following a statement from the National Labour Commission (NLC) that the strike was illegal. “When they said the strike was illegal things slowed down but now the strike has been resuscitated,” he said.

He added that POTAG had been surprised at the loud silence of the government in trying to resolve the issue, adding that the association was ready to sit down and discuss the issue with the education authorities.

Dialogue over allowances

He said the 2013 and 2014 academic year book and research allowance would have to be paid after which all the stakeholders would have to sit down and look at the way forward (on the allowance).

He said a unilateral decision was taken by the government to scrap the allowance which had been in existence for the past seven years.

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