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    Teacher Unions Express Discontent Over Outstanding Tier-2 Pension Payments

    Teachers' unions throughout Ghana are increasingly expressing dissatisfaction with the government's failure to fulfill Tier-2 pension obligations dating back to April 2023 under the leadership of Akufo-Addo Bawumia.

    Despite consistent deductions facilitated by the Controller and Accountant General’s Department (CAGD), recent reports indicate that significant sums owed to these unions have accumulated, reaching millions of Ghana cedis. Regrettably, these funds have not been channeled to the Ghana Education Service Occupational Pensions Scheme (GISOPS), leaving teachers' retirement funds unresolved.

    Government attempts to secure financial relief through the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have resulted in adverse effects on Organised Labour. Former Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta's hesitancy has caused losses for unions under the Trades Union Congress (TUC), compelling them to participate in the Domestic Debt Exchange Programme (DDEP) and face setbacks in their investments.

    As the largest segment of organized labor, teachers are disproportionately impacted by these challenges. Leading the charge, the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) boasts approximately 280,000 members, followed by the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) with 70,000 members, and the Coalition of Concerned Teachers Ghana (CCT-Ghana) with over 15,000 members.

    Compounding the issue is the failure of the CAGD to remit teachers' deducted dues since November 2023. Despite ongoing grievances, only a single month's allocation has been disbursed, resulting in a three-month backlog.

    The delayed funds not only support union operations but also serve as capital for subsidiary initiatives like the Teachers Fund, which provides financial aid to educators. Consequently, the sluggish approval process for loans, which can take up to three months, presents a significant challenge for teachers seeking financial assistance.

    Observers attribute the situation to the Akufo-Addo Bawumia government's failure to fulfill statutory payments, including allocations from the District Assemblies Common Fund (DACF), MP’s Common Fund, and GETFUND. Additionally, delays in distributing laptops under the 1Teacher-1Laptop policy exacerbate the situation, placing immense pressure on union leaders and elected executives.

    In response to the crisis, Charles Kusi of Legal Alliance has been appointed by the unions to engage with the Ghana Education Service (GES) and the Ministry of Education (MOE), urging prompt action to address the persistent delays.

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