Concerned University Students of Ghana to demonstrate if the government refuses to address the plight of UTAG.
A group of students calling themselves concerned University Students of Ghana are planning to demonstrate if the government does not consider the proposals of UTAG. They feel their immediate student leaders, SRC, NUGS and USAG, have been silent on this. Meanwhile, students are suffering on campus.
UTAG members have been on strike since the beginning of August because they want the government to restore the conditions of service agreed upon in 2012 which they said was far better than the current situation.
The 2012 Single Spine package put entry-level lecturers on a salary of $2,084 while the current level puts lecturers’ salaries around $900.
However, the National Labour Commission (NLC) on August 6, 2021 secured an interlocutory injunction from the court to compel UTAG to call off their strike which started on Monday August 2, 2021.
UTAG however refused to comply with the Court order, indicating that the premise is false.
While the NLC says that UTAG cannot remain on strike while negotiations with government is ongoing, UTAG insists that there is currently no active negotiation between them and the government.
The NLC and UTAG met in court yesterday to discuss the issue after reaching a deadlock. Finally, the University Teachers Association of Ghana was fined Ghc3,000 by the Accra Labour Court, which was presided over by Justice Frank Rockson Aboadwe.
UTAG has not called off the strike, according to checks, and is sticking by the decision of its Executive Meeting last week, in which members agreed to continue the nationwide strike.
While the hearing has been rescheduled for August 19, the Labour Court in Accra has asked the NLC and the UTAG to resolve the current dispute.
Concerned University Students, a group of students who are upset by the continuing industrial strike, has given various reasons why the government should regard UTAG’s concerns.
Below is their concerns to the government;
WE BEG YOU, GOVERNMENT
CONCERNED UNIVERSITY STUDENTS
We want to thank our membership for taking this bold step to support the agenda #End UTAG Strike Now. All credible voices are silent on this issue of National concern. Though we respect our student leadership i.e NUGS, SRC and USAG, we are tired of their constant silence. Below are our concerns:
- 1. We have been on campus for the past two and half weeks without teaching learning and its related activities.
- 2. We have exhausted our food stuffs.
3. Continuing students’ exams have been suspended.
4. Final year students’ are stranded as a result of the strike. They do not know when to write their final exams. Their National Service calendar has almost been distorted.
5. We hoped that the court could bring an encouraging outcome but to our dismay, it was adjourned thereby keeping students in suspense.
6. The court slapped our lecturers again with a ¢3,000.00 debt.
7. The court advised the two parties (NLC & UTAG) to seek out of court settlement and both of them agreed.
8. We are very sure that our lecturers are willing to resume work if the National Labour Commission (NLC) agrees to do the needful due them [our lecturers]
9. We want to use this platform to beg the government to feel pity for us (students) and settle this matter with utmost urgency. See us as your own children suffering in school and consider us worthy.
10. What wrong have we done to deserve all these tribulations, oh government?
11. Our last resort would be a street protest. We would not hesitate to launch a demonstration against government if we continue to stay on campus without any thing aside eating and drinking.