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17.06.2005 Regional News

Teachers Emoluments


Suhum (E/R), June 17, GNA - Mr Solomon Djabah-Mensah, the Eastern Regional Chairman of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), has appealed to the government to urgently consider an overhaul of the salary structure of teachers. He said although the government had made progress in other areas of education such as the provision of infrastructure and equipment in basic schools, that of the emolument of teachers had not yet received much

attention. Speaking at the Second Quadrennial Delegates Conference of the Suhum/ Kraboa/Coalter District branch of GNAT at Suhum on Thursday, Mr Djabah-Mensah said teachers deserved better treatment than they are being offered. He complained that teachers are denied facilities that sister organizations such as those in the health sector are enjoying and urged the government to remove such discriminatory pay disparities.

''Teachers should be offered additional duty working allowances just as health professionals because many teachers, including housemasters and headmasters in secondary schools, virtually work twenty hours per day.'' He could not understand that whilst the payment of the "paltry" teachers'' responsibility allowance of 30,000 cedis are often delayed, some health personnel were reported to be earning as much as four million cedis a month for similar duties.

Mr Djabah-Mensah described as "misplaced" assertions in some quarters that teachers should not be entitled to additional duty allowances because of their large number and said such an allowance would be a reward for a hard work done and not something free. On GNAT's perceived antagonism towards the leadership of the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT), Mr Djaba-Mensah, said GNAT was working towards a united teachers' front and condemned the timing of NAGRAT's recent strike action.

Mr Richard Sagodo, the Deputy Eastern Regional Secretary of GNAT, rejected assertions that GNAT was insensitive to the plight of teachers ''Unlike in the past when it took teachers between 10 to 15 years to earn promotion, teachers now earn promotions at reasonable intervals."

Mr Sagodo said GNAT would not return to an adversarial and militaristic way in dealings with the government unless the situation warranted it and ''not until GNAT had exhausted more appropriate and mature channels now available to it under the current labour dispensation." Mr Michael Kofi Mensah, the District Chief Executive, suggested to