THE Committee set up by the President to find ways of addressing the impasse over the payment of allowances of university teachers yesterday presented its report to President John Evans Atta Mills.
Presenting the report, Professor Asabere Ameyaw, Chairman of the seven member committee, expressed optimism that the recommendation would go a long way to address the challenges of the payment of allowances to teachers in tertiary institutions.
He lauded the cooperation and support of the Ministry of Education which enabled the committee to come out with the recommendations to overcome “a crisis situation.
President Mills receiving the report commended the decision of the striking university teachers to return to work.
He said “There is no problem that cannot be solved so long as there is goodwill on both sides,” and expressed appreciation to the teachers who have called off the strike urging the others to follow”.
The President said it was regrettable that the issue resulted in the teachers embarking on a strike action to seek redress adding that a solution was in sight.
He said there was a need for Ghanaian workers to exercise restraint in the face of labour challenges, saying the national interest should reign supreme over any other interest.
To reciprocate gesture of the teachers, President Mills pledged that the recommendations in the report would be implemented to the fullest to effectively solve the problem.
In addition, he said, the Ministry of Finance would be made to work with utmost dispatch to address the situation.
“We will implement this to address the issue once and for all,” he told the members of the committee.
The details of the report, which the President promised to act on swiftly, were not closed to the media.
The university lecturers on a number of campuses, including the University of Ghana and the Ghana Institution of Journalism, are said to have called off the strike, and resumed teaching, while others are yet to follow.
Members of University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG) withdrew their services in public universities on October 1, 2010, to demand the restoration of the actual value of the entry-level salary of the university teacher as agreed upon in the government-UTAG salary road map in 2008.
The action was also intended to force the government to pay the arrears for the restoration of the value of the entry-level salary of the university teacher from January, 2009 to the present.
Following the strike, President Mills last Friday met with the Vice Chancellors from the various public universities over the issue after which he set up the seven-member committee to look into the grievances of the teachers and make appropriate recommendations.
Members of the committee were Dr. George Graham-Smith, Chief Executive of the Fair Wages & Salaries Commission, Dr. J.S. Annan, a deputy Minister of Education, Dr. Kodzo Gavua, President of the University of Ghana , Legon branch of UTAG, Augustine Ahamey from the Ministry of Employment and Social Welfare, Alhaji Fuseini Baba Seidu of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, and Major (Rtd) M. S. Tara, a Director at the Ministry of Education.
Those present at the Castle to witness the presentation of the report included the Chief of Staff, John Henry Martey Newman, Education Minister, Alex Tettey-Enyo, Finance Minister, Dr. Kwabena Duffour and Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Kwesi Amissah Arthur.