“Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters” (Albert Einstein)
In fact, there is no denying the fact that, education in Ghana is incomplete without the Ghanaian teachers.
This is a fact that cannot be contested. But the obvious question that always beg for answers is whether the Ghanaian teacher is given that due recognition and respect as they deserve. Your guess is as good as mine.
As said by Guy Kawasaki, “If you have to put someone on a pedestal, put teachers. They are the society’s heroes”
Educational Workers Connect, an educational Think Tank interested in ensuring quality education across the country has once again read with pleasant surprise a circular emanating from GES asking the teachers to once again submit their documents to justify the payment of their old age legitimately owed legacy arrears. This directive we consider not just worrying, unjustified and unfair to the hardworking teachers across the country but also an orchestrated ploy by GES to either frustrate the teachers or to once again delay the process of paying the teachers their legacy arrears.
We say this because we know for a fact that the teachers have several times submitted these documents through their Union leaders. Besides, GES have been on record to have stated unequivocally that they were either working on the modalities to pay the teachers or had paid the teachers. A claim the teachers disputed. So the natural question to ask GES is to know which documents did they use to pay those they claimed they had paid? So, we are asking GES to tell the whole country how many times they want the teachers to continuously submit their documents to warrant the payment of these legacy arrears owed these teachers?
We are also on record to have asked GES on 6th August, 2020 to publish the list of all the teachers they claimed they had paid to settle the issues since the teachers denied receiving those arrears. Unfortunately, GES failed to heed to this simple demand that they themselves had promised to do when the teachers mounted a spirited defence against their claim of paying the teachers.
We want to remind GES in case they are unaware that teachers are moaning, groaning and disillusioned with the system. It is important for GES to know that there is so much anger and agitation yet to explode if they fail to pay these teachers expeditiously Therefore, the least we expect GES to do to the teachers is to deny same teachers what is legitimately theirs.
The ramifications that this bad treatment by GES is having on our teachers with its concomitant effects on our education are obvious and dire.
We also want to use this opportunity to ask the various teacher unions if it is a crime or an error to make them the teacher union leaders. We ask this question because of their deafening silence on this legacy arrears issue in a very long while. What has happened to effective communication with their members? What do they know that their members do not know for which reason they seem very lethargic on this very sensitive matter?
This is because according to the Gen Secretary of Gnat, Mr. Thomas T. Musah, GNAT had compiled an electronic database of all their members owed varied arrears totalling 45,512 across the country. This data he said was submitted to GES on 27th Feb, 2020.
So why is GES again asking same teachers to submit same documents? If this is not a ploy to frustrate the teachers, then what again could be the motive?
The teacher Union leaders must remember that “one of the truest tests of integrity is its blunt refusal to be compromised. “(Chinua Achebe). We demand of them to as a matter of urgency, fight for the rights of their members. This is a non negotiable point that must be stated unequivocally.
We are therefore, asking GES to get the documents that they so need from the teachers either from the teacher Union leaders or from their database.
According to Brian Tracy, ” Integrity is the most valuable and respected quality of leadership. GES must protect their integrity and stop what we consider to be an unfair treatment being meted out to the teachers. What crime have the Ghanaian teachers committed to warrant these unacceptable treatments from those who should know better? Our leaders, especially our political leaders across governments who are taking the Ghanaian teachers through this agony must remember that it is teachers who taught them, still teaching some of them and teaching their children. So why treat these teachers with contempt and unfairness?
We want to end our call by once again reminding GES of the figures that we are looking at as presented by the teacher unions.
Teachers owed legacy arrears as follows;
Total number of teachers owed excluding NAGRAT members is *54,922* lt doesn’t mean NAGRAT members are not owed. But, we are not accurate on the exact figure.
This data was submitted to GES on 27th Feb.2020.
Once again, enough of the submission of documents. Pay the teachers their legacy arrears. Ghanaian teachers deserve better.
Their rewards are no more in heaven. The Ghanaian teachers need their rewards on this earth.
God bless Ghana!
God bless Educational Workers Connect!
Daniel Yao Agbezudor