TEWU strike ill-timed- Government
Deputy Minister of Education J.S. Annan told Joy News’ Bernard Saibu that the action was ill-timed, especially when government has shown enough commitments to pay the salary arrears owed the workers.
Academic activities at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology on Monday came to a standstill after TEWU officially declared a strike. Even though their counterparts in the University of Ghana are yet to make any such official declaration, the Balme library, the research hub for all students has been closed.
TEWU workers converged at the courtyard of the university’s registry on Monday morning waiting to hear the final decision from their leadership. The situation at the University of Cape Coast was no different as workers prepare to officially announce a firm decision on Tuesday.
The nationwide protest is against seven months unpaid salary arrears. Some of the workers told Joy News they have had to resort to strike because government failed to live up to its own promise.
According to some of the workers, they were supposed to have received the first tranche of arrears in September and the second and final tranche in November, but government reneged on its own promise.
In a reaction, the deputy Education Minister said government is concerned with the turn of events and appealed to the workers to return to work as end of semester exams in most of the institutions is only days away.
He said government has released the first tranche and will release the second tranche in due course. Asked when government will pay the final tranche the minister said it will depend on the cash flow of government but was optimistic they will honour their promise.
“As far as I am aware the previous government did not even use to pay the full amount of the arrears. Sometimes if they owed seven months arrears like we owe an arrangement will be reached and maybe only three months will be paid. We have agreed to pay all the seven months in two tranche,” he said.