Teacher Unions in Ghana are on a Nationwide strike over the appointment of a Banker as Director General of the Ghana Education Service (GES).
According to them, the new appointee is a banker who has absolutely no background in the teaching profession hence the association is unhappy with his appointment.
On Monday, 17th October 2022, Prof Opoku-Amankwa, the immediate Director- General was relieved of the position and terminated his appointment via a letter from the office of the presidency.
An official letter from the office of the president with the subject “Appointment As Director- General Of The Ghana Education Service” was posted to Dr. Eric Nkansah on October 19th, 2022.
Upon his appointment, pre-tertiary teachers across the country sat at a meeting and declared strike action which has been effective from Friday, 4th November till today, Tuesday, 8th November 2022 respectively.
During a press conference in Accra last week, the President of NAGRAT, Mr. Angel Carbonou indicated that teachers were expecting a person who has a background in education would be appointed so as to bring his professionalism to bear but what they saw was a square peg into a round hole.
He again argued that the rationale behind their strike hammers on the fact that, Mr. Eric Nkansah is a ‘banker’ and not a ‘professional teacher’.
“What annoyed and surprised all of us was that a new Director General has been appointed to the Ghana Education Service” he stressed
“The authority to appoint Director General of GES is the President of Ghana. Unfortunately, contrary to what the teacher unions indicated that we will want a Director who is a professional teacher, who can bring his knowledge, skills, and professionalism to bear on the activities of teachers and non-teachers in the GES”
“Contrary to that, the gentleman who was appointed yesterday is not a teacher, he is a banking officer, who was a special assistant in the office of the Minister and has been appointed as the DG of GES. we are not happy with this development, it is as if we don’t have professionals and well-educated people who have gone through the mill education in this country to run education ” he lamented
Meanwhile, a statement from the union indicates that the position of the ‘Director General’ has been for Educationalists only since 1974.
Rev. Isaac Owusu, the president of the Ghana National Association Of Teachers (GNAT) also spoke to the media adding, “It is unacceptable for a banker to be appointed as a Director-General of the Ghana Education Service instead of an educationalist, at the same time when many teachers who did the same course and related ones were rejected by the GES because it is not related to education”.
The aftermath and outcome of the strike action sought to halt all teaching activities in the public school; which involves elementary, middle, and pre-tertiary schools. In other words, teaching activities stretching from public schools – nursery, kindergarten, primary, Junior High School (JHS) to Senior High School(SHS) are to be on hold until a notice of revocation or resume is circulated.
The strike action continues as declared by the three teacher union namely NAGRAT(National Association Of Graduate Teachers), GNAT(Ghana National Association Of Teachers), and CCT (Coalition Of Concerned Teachers) until further notice.
Story written by Salome Kwaw