Shutdown of public universities imminent as UTAG strike continues
The shutdown of public universities may still not be off the table as the lecturers’ strike continues.
Members of the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG) are in their third week of a strike the National Labour Commission has described as illegal.
The lecturers are pushing for better conditions, demanding entry-level salaries of more than ¢1200.
Speaking on JoyNews’ Newsfile on Saturday, President of the University Ghana branch of the Association, Dr Samuel Nkumbaan said the demands by the lecturers are fair.
“It doesn’t look like that [our economy is in trouble] when you look at some of the Christmas decorations that happened quite recently. So we can appreciate the fact that it is not good.
“If it is not good what are you offering? It is not just okay to say blanketly that there is no money. We are not making any offers,” he said.
He also disclosed that the lecturers feel ignored and deceived by their employers in the situation.
On his part, the Vice President of IMANI Africa, Kofi Bentil, also stated that lecturers demand better.
He added the intellectuals in the country are not been treated right.
“I think there is sufficient justification for the lecturers striking. I have followed the baits and I think they have been disrespected.
“To force them into this place where they almost have to sign up to a life of penury is really not right and to bring them to the point where they virtually have to walk to the street and demonstrate is totally unfair, and we can contrast that with what we receive from other spheres,” he added.
Mr Bentil further charged the lectures to insist on what on their demands.
This not withstanding, If the strike persists after Monday without any resolution, the universities will be forced to shut down in accordance with labour regulations.
Meanwhile, an Accra High Court is expected to hear the case brought before it by the National Labour Commission against UTAG next Thursday, February 4.
UTAG has resolved to continue the strike until their concerns are addressed. But the NLC will have none of that.