The strike action by the Technical University Teachers Association entered its ninth day today and yet there is no sign of an end in sight. The members of TUTAG declared a strike action on October 7, 2019, to press home their demand for better working conditions.
They vowed not to return to the classroom unless government demonstrated its commitment in meeting their demand. The government, parents as well as students have appealed to the teachers to return to the classroom but they have not returned to the classroom.
Information reaching the Ghanaian Times indicates that the absence of the teachers in the classroom is having a negative impact on learning and teaching in some of the universities.
Our correspondents who visited some of the campuses witnessed empty lecture halls with some of the students doing their individuals studies. The students who appear frustrated appealed to the government and the teachers to dialogue to bring an end to the strike action.
"We need our lecturers back because the semester is about to end. The Ministry of Employment should listen to our teachers and deal with the problem so that they can return to the classroom" one of the students said to our reporter.
We share in the sentiments expressed by the students. It is our view that the strike should not have been declared in the first place as no one would come out victorious.
Neither the teachers nor the government is going to be affected by the strike action. Rather it is the poor students and their parents who are going to bear the brunt.
It is against this backdrop that we appeal to TUTAG and government to sit at the table to resolve the matter once and for all.
Thankfully, the Minister of State in charge of the Tertiary Education, Professor Kwesi Yankah, hinted earlier in the week that the government will address their grievances this week.
He was quoted as saying that the continued strike action was no longer necessary as negotiations between the association and the government over the matter had been smooth and just about ending with fruitful outcomes.
Prof. Yankah urged TUTAG to demonstrate goodwill by going back to the classroom to resume teaching to avoid derailing the academic calendar.
Sadly, as of the time of writing this editorial, the teachers had not returned to the classroom. They have stuck to their guns.
What it means is that their action could disrupt the academic calendar and affect students and their parents.
We, therefore, appeal to the teachers and the government to resolve the issues as quickly as possible, to enable the teachers to go back to the classroom.
We are of the view that dialogue is the only way to arrive at an amicable solution. Let's try it.