TEACHERS in the Ashanti and Upper East regions have called on the government to act with dispatch in the implementation of the Single Spine Salary Structure (SSSS).
While the Ashanti Regional branch of the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) cautioned the government against hiding behind threats by the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) to drag its feet over the implementation of the SSSS, the Upper East Regional branch of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) said it was displeased with the slow pace of implementation of the SSSS.
Speaking at the inauguration of the Ashanti regional chapter of the women’s wing of NAGRAT otherwise known as “Women of Excellence”, the regional chairman of NAGRAT, Mr Daniel Boama Duku, said it appeared the government was being forced by the doctors’ rejection of the SSSS to delay the implementation of the new salary scheme against the wishes of other groups of workers.
“Our patience is running out and if we don’t see any road map with regards to the implementation within the shortest possible time, we will advise ourselves,” Mr Duku said.
He noted that “times are hard and government cannot continue to play with our lives” and advised against aggravating confusion in the educational front.
Mr Duku maintained that it was only when teachers were motivated that they could offer their best.
The Regional Co-ordinator of the women’s wing, Mrs Adelaide Biyaa-Powers, pledged that the association would play its role effectively in the fight against child labour, teenage pregnancy and other vices that threatened the lives of the youth.
The Headmistress of St Louis Senior High School, Mrs Theresa Addai, who chaired the function, said the female graduate teacher could do a lot to bring sanity into the educational system.
At a teachers forum in Bolgatanga, the Regional Secretary of GNAT, Mr Linus Cofie Attey, announced that teachers had decided to put on red bands to work to express their frustration at what they termed the foot dragging on the part of the government in the implementation of the scheme.
Mr Attey said any further delay in solving the salary issue would lead to another action that was yet to be determined.
“Our plight has been made worse by rising inflation and high cost of utilities, rent and other consumables are whittling away the real values of earnings,” he added.
He said it had been the hope of teachers that by January 2009 each of them would have been enjoying a fairer salary structure devoid of distortions and disparity that would motivate them in their work, but this had not been the case.
“Our patience all this while is now turning into frustrations,” he said, adding that “the same applies to the national pension Act, Act 766 which is also suffering undue delay”.
He announced that based on this delay, the teachers in the region had decided to wear red bands to work as a warning to the government to expedite action on the implementation of the SSSS.
He, however, cautioned teachers in the region that the wearing of red band should not be misconstrued as a strike action and, therefore, advised them to go about their normal duties while they waited for a response from the government.