The National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) has expressed its disappointment with President John Mahama resolve not to restore teacher trainee allowance even if it meant losing the elections.
President Mahama on Thursday tweeted saying: “On the matter of trainee teacher allowances, better to lose on principle than win using falsehood. We’ll not reverse the decision. #UCC Forum.”
But the NAGRAT President, Christian Adai Poku retorted, “If the principle is not going to help the system, you don’t stick by the principle and say I am gambling my political career with it. When it happens like that you put very body in a very difficult position.”
He thus called on President Mahama to review his decision saying, “we have to look at the issue as a matter of policy and not of politics.”
President Mahama’s resolve will not neuter NAGRAT as Mr. Adai Poku maintained that his association “will continue to advocate our position on this matter and we are always ready to engage government.”
Government scrapped teacher trainee allowance in 2014 in a move that was met with stiff opposition from trainee teachers who went as far as demonstrations to compel government to reintroduce the allowances.
Government explained that the policy of trainee allowances was to be replaced by a student loan scheme which was available for all degree awarding institutions.
The decision according to government was also to allow an increase in the number of trainees admitted into various training colleges in the country.
Teacher trainees subsequently vowed to vote against the NDC government if it failed to restore the payment of their allowances before the 2016 general elections.