Government official has told the striking teachers that they cannot start negotiations with them when they are still embarking on their industrial action.
President of the National Association of Teachers (NAGRAT) and the General Secretary of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) Angel Carbonou and Thomas Musah respectively, who attended the meeting and in a few minutes boycott the meeting in Accra, told journalists after stepping out that the government’s representatives were insisting that the unions call off the strike before negotiations start.
According to the Deputy Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Bright Wireko Brobbey, the labour law does not permit negotiations to start when the strike is still in force therefore, they have asked the teachers to bring an end to their action.
After the meeting with labour unions he told journalists that “we started engaging them. Last Friday we met them and then we adjourned the meeting to today. You will recall that the Minister for Employment issued a statement and he appealed to them to call off the strike and for the government’s side to meet the entire organized labour because this was a matter that affected all labour unions, and so we were expecting that we will come here and the teacher unions would have called off the strike because section 161 of the Labour law does not permit negotiations or engagements when one party is on strike or lookout.
“So before the commencement of the meeting the government side had wanted to engage the teacher unions so that we see the way forward on the appeal we made to them last Friday. Unfortunately, organized labour were in solidarity since they had all come, we should meet them at once.”
“They had a caucus meeting for some time and then we came back and unfortunately the teacher unions themselves had even stepped out. Government maintains that we want to meet them and start negotiations but we can’t do this because we are constraint under the law not to negotiate when one party is on strike and so organized labour suggested that we adjourn the meeting and do more talking for them to call off the strike and then we start negotiations. The call was to us from organized labour for us to adjourn for us to do.”
Thomas Musah said “I think that what has happened today is very unfortunate. What we can say now is that our negotiation has come inconclusively and we are still on strike”
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Source : Honestynewsgh.com
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