Ferdinand|EducationGhana| October 31|Important Information from the 2022 GNAT Mandatory National Council Meeting
COMMUNIQUE ISSUED AT THE END OF THE 2022 MANDATORY NATIONAL COUNCIL MEETING HELD AT THE TEACHERS VILLAGE, ABANKRO, FROM 25TH OCTOBER, 2022
The National Council of the Ghana National Association of Teachers, GNAT, made up of 5 National Officers, 32 National Executive members, and 127 District Chairmen, with 3 Management Staff, and Full-time Staff across the regions in attendance, having met at the 2022 mandatory meeting at the Teachers Village, Abankro from25th-29th October 2022, and deliberated on all the issues tabled before it, do hereby issue this Communique.
Council discussed the termination of Professor Kwasi Opoku-Amankwa an Educationist as the Director-General of the Ghana Education Service, and his replacement with Dr Eric Nkansah, a Banker, and hereby states that:
(a) The position of Director-General of the Ghana Education Service is the preserve of Educationists, and has been occupied by Educationists since its creation in the 1970s, and remained as such, even under the military regime.
Council found the replacement of Prof. Kwasi Opoku-Amankwa with Dr Eric Nkansah the Banker, as both unfortunate and untenable. In this circumstance therefore Council calls for the revocation and subsequent appointment of an Educationist to occupy that office, by 4th November 2022.
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(b) With Mr Anthony Boateng, the Deputy Director-General of the Ghana Education Service who was granted one more year contract extension council still opposes the said contract extension, and thereby sounds this note of caution, that we would vehemently and vigorously resist any attempt to bring Mr. Anthony Boateng back into the system, and that the consequences of any such attempt may be too dire to handle
The council notes further, that:
2. The delay in supplying the laptops as well as a refund of the GHS44.55 to teachers is still creating anxiety on our front, with the potential of rocking the industrial peace we are currently experiencing
> Council expresses its indignation with the situation and calls for a resolution of the issue, by 9th December 2022, failure of which the Ministry of Education/ Ghana Education Service should be held responsible for whatever may happen.
3. Payment of the 2022 Continuous Professional Development (CPD) allowance to Teachers had not been done, as at today 29th October 2022. We, therefore, call on the Management of the GES to ensure that the said allowance is paid before the end of December 2022, failure of which the Union would advise themselves.
4. The use of the availability of vacancy as the determinant for promotion to the grades of Director II and I is a disincentive to Teachers, thus causing them disaffection, and frustration, impeding career progression within the Service, and consequently affecting their pension/retirement emoluments, at the end of Service.
Council, therefore, calls for the application of the principles for promotion as prescribed by the GES on the Senior ranks to the Grades of Director II and I.
That moving forward, promotions to Director II and I should not be based on vacancies, and teachers who qualify for promotion to the said ranks should be promoted.
5. Payment of allowances based on a percentage of monthly gross salary to teachers in areas designated as deprived, as enjoined by the 2020 Collective Agreement between the Teacher Unions and the GES has not been implemented.
Council, therefore, calls for the implementation of the said provision in the Collective Agreement before the end of December 2022.
Some teachers who passed their promotion interviews since 2015 have not been put on the scale. Council finds this irritating and provocative, and with the potential of disturbing the peace on the education front.
Council, therefore, calls on the Ministry of Education/GES to resolve this issue and all other matters relating to especially Lower Rank promotions by the end of December 2022
7. The 2020 Collective Agreement should be reviewed, having run for 3 years as enjoined by Section 41.1 of the Document.
8. Staff of the GES Directorates have been compelling and sometimes threatening teachers to attend all kinds of Continuous Professional Development programmes run by some Service Providers at exorbitant fees
Council expresses its indignation with this situation and therefore calls on the GES to sanitize the CPD environment to curb the persistent exploitation, intimidation and pressure of our members.
9. Council calls on the Ministries of Education and Employment and Labour Relations (MOELR) to open the window for Base Pay Negotiations, not later than November 2022.
10. Reimbursements for the Ghana Education Service Occupational Pension Scheme (GESOPS) by the Controller and Accountant General’s Department to the Unions are in six months’ arrears.
The council notes that this is having catastrophic effects on returns of pensions, with members having reduced lump sum payments, upon retirement.
Council, therefore, calls on the Ministry of Finance to instruct the Controller and Accountant General’s Department to pay all outstanding Tier-Two funds to the Custodians before the end of November 2022 to save members who retire, from post-retirement anxieties and uncertainties
11. The Government of Ghana, through the Ministry of Finance, would be undertaking a debt restructuring, as part of the IMF Conditionalities, under which domestic bondholders, the GESOPS included, would have their bonds restructured. Council notes that under the arrangement, the GESOPS’ funds which are the largest Tier-Two Pensions in Ghana would be affected badly, with teachers and educational workers losing lots of monies, when they retire.
Council, therefore, calls on Government to exempt Pension Funds from the said restructuring, taking cognizance of the fact that pensions in the country are already nothing to write home about.
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