The University Teachers’ Association of Ghana (UTAG) has urged government to stop distracting it with the delay in paying benefits and allowances due them.
According to the association in its resolve to fight for the rights of its members, they have been tagged as a group that enjoys embarking on strike.
Speaking at the first national experts’ forum in Accra, President of UTAG, Dr. Harry Agbenu lamented that the label does not auger well for the association.
“UTAG is an association of intellectuals and experts in all fields of academic endeavor whose contributions to national development cannot be overemphasized.
Unfortunately, UTAG has over the years been presented to the public as an association of self-seeking egoistic individuals who have no concern for the national course and are willing at the least opportunity to go on strike without regard for the negative impact of such actions on academic work and national development.”
The UTAG President also noted that the association can achieve more for the country if government stops distracting them.
According to him, the association has the potential to proffer solutions to the country’s problems and called on government to create favorable working environment to motivate them to do even more.
“The UTAG express forum is not only a re-branding effort of the association, it is also a demonstration of the fact that when stakeholders especially governments do not unnecessarily distract us by wasting our time chasing the little genuinely due us, there is a lot we can think about and do to fast track the developmental agenda of our dear nation.
UTAG is ready and willing to harness and deploy its expertise to solving national problems. All we ask for is the space and encouragement to do so,” he added.
The forum was in partnership with Citi FM, and held at the University of Ghana.
UTAG threaten strike over book and research allowance
UTAG earlier this year threatened to embark on strike if government fails to release its book and research allowance.
The union had been complaining about the delay of the payment of the allowances for the 2015/2016 academic year which in previous years led to strikes by the lecturers and disrupted the academic calendars.
Government subsequently released GHc 37 million to the Controller and Accountant General’s Department for the payment of the allowances.