Education

NAGRAT Pushes For Strike Over Cost Of Living Allowance

Members of the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) are pushing for industrial action over the failure of the Government of Ghana to implement the proposed Cost Of Living Allowance (COLA).

The conversation around COLA was sparked on May 1, 2022, when the Secretary-General of the Trades Union Congress (TUC), Dr Yaw Baah pleaded with the President and stakeholders to institute at least a 20% allowance for all Public service workers and some private-sector workers to serve as a cushion amid the rising cost of living.

At a press conference in the Volta Region yesterday, Volta Regional Chairman for NAGRAT, David Gellie called on the national leadership of the teacher union to resort to industrial action if no positive development arises with regard to the COLA proposal to the government after June 30, 2022.

“Leadership can no longer guarantee the reaction of members if the government does not grant the COLA of 20% by the end of June. As we speak now, the intelligence we are picking is that validation is out and there is no sign of COLA being added to our salary. We can no longer bear the pain.

“We demand of our leadership, I mean the union leadership, that if at the end of June 2022, our call for COLA is not heeded they should not have any option than to pay heed to the clarion call of our members to lay down our tools”, he said.

In a separate press conference in the Ashanti Region, the President of the Ashanti regional branch of the union, Francis Yaw Owusu lamented the cost of living amid inflation.

“The cost of living in Ghana today is rising with the speed of light and has not shown any sign of abating. The price of fuel, goods and services continue to rise by the day and yet the teacher’s salary remains the same. Between January and now, fuel prices have increased by over 30%. Not to talk of other goods such as food, building materials, etc.

“Ghana’s annual inflation rate accelerated for the 12 consecutive months to 27.6% in May 2022 from 23.6% in April. Food inflation currently is at 30.1% as against 26.6% in April with Transport being 39%. The teacher today is virtually living on life support. As a result of this precarious situation, the worker finds himself, labour unions pleaded with the government to cushion the Ghanaian worker by granting Cost of Living Allowance called (COLA) to help mitigate the mass suffering of the Ghanaian worker”, he said.

Source: opemsuo.com/Hajara Fuseini

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