PRESS CONFERENCE BY AGGRIEVED TEACHERS ADDRESSED BY MR MATHIAS TULASI ON THE TOPIC “WE WILL WORK FOR H.E. JOHN DRAMANI MAHAMA TO COME AND PAY OUR SALARY ARREARS”.
Good morning ladies and gentlemen of the press herein gathered. On behalf of teachers owed salary arrears, I wish to welcome you all to this very important Press Conference and to also thank you for your prompt response to our call. You cannot be wrong for coming here because the purpose of this gathering addresses a critical issue affecting Ghanaian teachers.
Ladies and gentlemen, there is no denying the fact that, education in Ghana is incomplete without Ghanaian teachers. This is a fact that cannot be contested. But the obvious question that always begs for answers is whether Ghanaian teachers are given that due recognition and respect that they deserve. Your guess is as good as mine.
It is important for us to state that, democracy without education is meaningless because it is education and enlightenment that lift a nation to the heights of progress and greatness.
As teachers, we are at the frontline of education and play a major role in shaping values, knowledge and skills of students. We are the pillars of the nation-building process because we help influence the next generation to become morally responsible, and productive members of our community.
We are the country’s gatekeepers, opening doors to opportunities and possibilities that are beyond the foreseeable horizon. We trigger visions, develop building blocks and catalyze actions to build the world to come. So, we would not allow ourselves to be taken for granted any longer.
Ladies and gentlemen, H.E. Nana Addo said that 95% of the legacy arrears were cleared, but H.E. Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia stated at their Manifesto launch held at Cape Coast on 22nd August, 2020 as part of their achievements they have cleared all legacy arrears owed teachers. But when the minister of education, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh met with NPP teachers network in HO, he also mentioned 91% of the legacy arrears were cleared. These contradictory positions by our leaders only show how deceptive this government as far as the intention to pay the legitimately owed legacy arrears to the affected teachers are concerned.
The fact remains that we still have over Sixty Three Thousand (63,000) teachers across the country owed the legacy arrears. Their statements are not only false and misleading but a deliberate attempt by this government to deny the affected teachers what is due us.
Their deceptive statements we consider disrespectful to our profession and ungratefulness on their part after we teachers have made them all what they are in society today.
We thought it was a joke but it is now clear to us that this government led by H.E. Nana Addo is not ready to pay us our salary arrears. We want to put on record that we demanded from the Ghana Education Service to publish the list from those they claimed they have paid the legacy arrears but till date no response from GES in that regard.
To add insult to injury, GES only circulated a statement asking us to once again submit our documents to justify the payment of our old age legitimately owed legacy arrears. We consider this position as not only unfortunate but also worrying, unjustified and unfair to the hardworking teachers across the country. This is because we were made to severally submit the very documents they are demanding from us to them and to our teacher Unions.
Ladies and gentlemen of the press, we want to use this opportune moment to ask our union leaders, if it is a crime or an error to make them our leaders? We ask this nagging question because of their deafening silence on this salary arrears issue.
We want to put on record that if H.E. John Dramani Mahama had not lost the 2016 election, all teachers owed would have been paid their salary arrears long ago. This is because some of our colleagues were paid in full and the rest of us were being verified for payment before he lost power. Nana Addo promised then to pay us all our salary arrears when voted for and they even captured in the manifesto teachers are suffering but are we better off today? The answer is a big No.
This government is just playing games with teachers because they claimed they did not introduce the 3months pay policy.
Teaching is the one profession that creates all other professions. Teachers must therefore, be accorded the dignity and respect by politicians of this country. This is non negotiable!
Ladies and gentlemen, at this juncture we have nothing to do but to call on all the over Sixty Three Thousand (63,000) teachers owed salary arrears to work assiduously for H.E. John Dramani Mahama to come back to power and pay all our salary arrears because H.E. Nana Addo led government will not pay us salary arrears. That is the very reason why they kept on peddling untruth to the entire nation claiming that the teachers have been paid when in all honesty, we still have over Sixty Three Thousand (63,000) teachers yet to be paid.
We are concluding with the quote by Guy Kawasaki, “If you have to put someone on a pedestal, put teachers. They are the society’s heroes” Our salary arrears will not go unpaid because we have worked for it.
Once again, we thank you all for coming!
Mathias Tulasi 0243735430
Daniel Agbezudor 0243851542