UTAG agrees, in principle, to call off strike

UTAG agrees, in principle, to call off strike
UTAG agrees, in principle, to call off strike

Africa-Press – Ghana. The leadership of the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG) has agreed, in principle, to call off the over one-month strike after a meeting with the Parliamentary Committee on Education.

Mr Peter Nortsu-Kotoe, the Ranking Member of the Education Committee, disclosed this on the Floor of Parliament on Thursday and said they would announce their final decision after consultation with their members.

The high level meeting with the Committee on Education had UTAG leadership, the Minister for Employment and Labour Relations, Mr Ignatius Baffour-Awuah, as well as officials of the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission.

“Mr Speaker, after listening to the cases, we realised that there will be a need for more dialogue. We finally appealed, as a Committee, to UTAG to call off the strike, which they agreed to in principle,” he said.

“We expect they call off the strike today and then continue with the negotiations.”

The Labour Division of the Accra High Court on Tuesday granted an interlocutory injunction against the industrial action by UTAG after an appeal by the National Labour Commission (NLC).

The NLC went to court after attempts to have the Association call off the strike failed. The court, on two occasions, ordered both parties to adopt an out-of-court settlement, but the engagements ended without any agreements.

With the latest order, it was expected that UTAG would immediately return to the classroom, but it did not. To that end, the meeting with the Committee on Education became the last undertaking to resolve the deadlock between the factions, which according to Mr Nortsu-Kotoe, had been amicably resolved.

Mr Baffour-Awuah told Parliament that the Government was willing to sit down with UTAG to deliberate on the issues. “Mr Speaker, the Government is ever ready to jaw-jaw with UTAG to bring life back to the universities,” he said.

Meanwhile, it is unclear the conditions under which UTAG would be calling off the strike or the nature of concessions that were made at the meeting. The substantive motion is still in court and it is expected to be heard on Tuesday, February 22, 2022. UTAG, on Monday, January 10, 2022, embarked on industrial action over what members described as “worsening conditions of service.”

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