Isn’t it ironic that,someone who prides himself as an educationist, has sat unconcerned for University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG) to declare strike action, without making any effort to thwart it, before it literally became, “ pay me this or I don’t go back to the classroom”.
Since 2013, this is the first time UTAG, has been uncompromising, because of the posture, not only by the National Labour Commission (NLC), but the intransigent of the ministry of Education.
Like many threats from other teacher unions, the inability of Dr Yaw Adutwum, minister responsible for Education, to get ahead of the problem, is why, although tertiary schools in the country have reopened, students are still at home.
Sadly, the needless stance taken by the NLC, to head to court to compel the lecturers back into the classroom, has exacerbated the problem.
We note rather worrisomely that the outbreak of Covid-19 in the country and the subsequent closure of schools, which was occasioned by the spread of the virus, has already affected the academic calendar.So any delay in getting the lecturers back into the classroom, will further worsen the plight of the students and education in general.
We have observed again that, Dr Yaw Adutwum, is fond of chasing glory to the neglect of his work. He also has the penchant of trying new things, which are not in the best interest of education in the country.
More than anything else, the continued absence of the lecturers from the classroom, is a verdict to the performance of the minister.
Lecturers have sacrificed in the past and continue to sacrifice. When they are engaged constructively, we believe, they will return to the classroom.
This deliberate refusal, to listen to their concerns and take steps to address them, is why we still have this stalemate.
The minister must be ready to toe a different path, by genuinely recognizing and accepting that, Lecturers are poorly paid and deserve better.
Above all, there must have an open and frank discussions, supported by constant engagement with all stakeholders in the education sector. This in our opinion is possible.