Teacher trainees chase govt over 7 months unpaid allowance; hint of potential food shortage
The Teacher Trainees Association of Ghana (TTAG) has voiced concern with the seven-month delay in the delivery of their monthly stipend.
They have warned that food shortages are expected to affect universities shortly as a result of allowance nonpayment.
According to the National President, Jonathan Dzunu, trainees have not received any allowance since January 2022, which has had a significant impact on them.
He made the revelation while speaking to his colleagues at the 26th TTAG General Assembly at St. Francis College of Education in Hohoe.
Mr Dzunu emphasized that the allowances provided with food grants as a component for the various institutions of education are intended to alleviate the enormous financial strain on teacher trainees.
However, their delays have made life difficult for them, particularly for level 400 pupils who would be leaving the schools shortly.
He also stated that level 100 students who finished their first semester and the first half of their second semester were not compensated.
“The level 200 and 300 students have completed the first semester and are about to begin the second semester, but they have not received a dime in allowance.”
“With the country’s current economic turmoil, you can imagine the difficulty students are facing; living on campus without allowance has become really terrible for us,” he bemoaned.
Mr Dzunu further disclosed that school administrators have been put in difficult positions since suppliers are refusing to distribute food owing to outstanding accounts.
“Let me add that we are fully aware of the country’s present economic and financial difficulties.” However, the innocent teacher trainee should not be exploited as a scapegoat.
“If this is not followed, it will be like a poultry farmer whose chicken is taken by a hawk and then throws eggs at the hawk, forgetting that both originate from the same poultry; in the meantime, excellent teacher education can help change our nation’s economic fortunes,” he said.
Though he praised the Akufo-Addo administration for restoring the allowance, he emphasized that the concerns must be addressed.
“It is our opinion that the massive delay in payment of allowances will send the clock backwards, and the few successes chalked up as a result of the implementation of the teacher trainee allowance scheme will be whittled away, taking into account the historical antecedent that led to the implementation of the allowance scheme and the positive effect it has had on teacher education in particular and basic education in general over the years,” he said.