Associate Professor Anthony Simons, Pro-Vice-Chancellor of the University of Mines and Technology (UMaT), Tarkwa has urged the government to complete the Labour Market Survey (LMS) and to compensate university teachers adequately.

He said the current salary levels of university teachers were problematic and required urgent attention to help attract and retain qualified staff.

Mr Simons said this when he delivered a talk on the “Challenges of the Single Spine Salary Structure: The Case of the University Teacher’s,” at the 20th UTAG Biennial National Delegates Congress held at UMaT.

He said at the time of migrating the University lecturers onto the Single Spine Salary Structure (SSSS), the group foresaw the creation of future distortions.

Government urged to complete Labour Market Survey

He said the inequities had led to agitations by the various labour unions, including UTAG, which went on strike from August 2 to 22, 2021, with adverse consequences on the 2020/2021 Academic Calendar of Public universities.

Mr Simons said the agitation had become a complicated one and presented no easy solution.

“Following the migration of UTAG members onto the SSSS, Government issued a White Paper on the Market Premium in April 2013, which, in effect, put a freeze on the Market Premium until the Government and the Employer, conducts an LMS, he explained

“This is incongruous to the Memorandum of Understanding signed between Government and UTAG. It is sad to state that to date, the Government has not been successful in conducting the LMS, resulting in the erosion of the salary of the University Teacher.”

Mr Simons emphasized that the 2004-2008 roadmap sought to improve the levels of remuneration of the senior members of public universities to a minimum of the cedi equivalent of US$1,500.00 by December 2008 to cover Basic Salary and Various Allowances.

The allowances included Professional Allowance 200 percent of the Basic Salary) and non-taxable Special Book Allowance (US$600.00 paid annually).

He further said “UTAG was required to embark on industrial action annually before restoration to the US$1,500.00 could be achieved for a given year. Thus, the expected salary of the university teacher, as per the roadmap, was not achieved.”

Ad-hoc measures, like the Non-Basic Salary Allowance, Mr Simons mentioned, were unattractive and that some young lecturers had resigned and migrated abroad.

He said the present salary disparity between Articles 71 and 190 office holders was too wide and efforts must be made to close the gap as recommended in the Prof. Yaa Ntiamoah-Baidu Presidential Committee on Emoluments Report.

He urged UTAG which now has its leadership at UMaT to continue to be proactive and remain resolute at the negotiating table, adding that “At all times, remember to consider the plight of the general membership in every deliberation with the employer.”

Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum, the Minister of Education, said the university was a critical partner in producing Ghana’s human resources to the growing economy.

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