The leadership of four teachers’ associations in Ghana on the fourth of July 2022, declared a nationwide strike action.
The strike action was in response to a failed concession by government to their demands of an allowance increase of 20% termed as Cost of Living Allowance (COLA).
The unions in a joint press statement released on the 4th June 2022 contended in part “…our demand is influenced by the high level of inflation in the country; the incessant skyrocketing prices of fuel, goods and services have eroded the already so called woefully salary increases granted us as expressed in 4% and 7% for 2021 and 2022 respectively. Inflation in the country is currently at 27.6% and continues to escalate ad infinitum; only God knows when this will abate”.
Though the reasons for their demands are genuine under the circumstances, a lot of Ghanaians have interpreted the timing of their demands and strike action as politically motivated.
Kumasi based popular actor Nana Yeboah has labeled the demands of the unions as insensitive; and has called on teachers to consider the economic circumstances of the country and go back to the classrooms.
The celebrated humorist questioned the actions of teachers in a face book video monitored by afropolitanonline.com: “What is the importance of what you are doing? During the Covid lockdown period when government was paying your salaries even when you were not teaching, why didn’t you tell government, because we are not teaching, withhold our salaries?
Nana Yeboah’s line of thought has been expressed by millions of pro government supporters who think teachers should wait until the economy of the country takes good shape.
In the meantime, Presidents of the teachers’ unions are indisposed to call off the strike action until government resolves to pay the 20% increase of their allowance.