Political science lecturer at the University of Ghana, Legon, Prof Ransford Gyampo, has called for a rekindling of the post-independence era value placed on teachers by the then governments.
Making his point in an opinion piece titled ‘Salaries and Conditions of Service of teachers: A historical note,’ the Senior Lecturer at the political science department said prior to independence in 1951, up to the end of the First Republic, University Teachers were valued as crucial in producing a critical mass of nation builders.
“They were, therefore, among the highly paid Public Servants in Ghana. The salaries of lecturers in Ghana were similar to those of their counterparts in the UK. A Lecturer was paid a sum of £1,040 per annum while a Member of Parliament received £960 per annum,” he said.
His historical analysis of the value placed on teachers comes at a time the members of the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG) have proceeded on an indefinite strike over unfavourable conditions of service.
UTAG members, like Prof Gyampo, believe the government is failing to present progressive proposals on the negotiating table.
Lecturers at the nation’s public universities have embarked on strike because they believe the government has refused to improve the worsening conditions of service of the university teachers.
In Prof Gyampo’s article, which he said was informed by archived documents and discussions with some surviving retired teachers, MPs and seasoned academics who experienced Kwame Nkrumah’s region, he said “politicians who value nation building beyond mere rhetoric and those who are interested in leaving behind a good legacy after the expiration of their mandate to govern, must…quickly go back to learn from how the colonial masters and Nkrumah placed value on teachers over politicians.”
Read his full article here.