Teachers in Ghana were alerted to the theft of their Professional Development Allowance (PDA) in September 2021 to buy laptops. According to what we were told by GNAT, NAGRAT, and CCT the government will cover a portion of the cost of the laptop. After the government’s earlier declaration regarding the infamous ” ONE TEACHER – ONE LAPTOP” program, the choice to purchase the laptop was made. Teacher unions collaborated with the minister of education to take nearly GH₵600 out of the PDA. Even though All Teachers Alliance Ghana (ATAG) had questioned the laptop’s quality and functionality through demonstration, teachers did not support the call. Secretly, the unions misled teachers by asserting that the government would even reimburse some GH₵46 after the reduction was made. Once more, the unions misled the teachers by claiming that every teacher would have a laptop by December 2021. The teacher unions’ assertion that a GH₵300 training component is included in the laptop’s price so that teachers can attend IT courses is the most misleading of all. The resulting conclusion is that teacher unions have not been trustworthy and upfront with teachers on the purchase of laptops.
On Tuesday, December 7, 2021, on Joy News’ PM express broadcast, the NAGRAT president mentioned something interesting: “The PDA paid by the government was not meant for buying Kelewele and Agbelikaklo.” He emphasizes that the teacher unions have the right to choose how to use the PDA because they were the ones who negotiated for it. His remark ended up being a declaration of what GNAT, NAGRAT, and CCT planned to accomplish with the PDA. The three unions have devised a new scheme to take our PDA. This year’s teacher PDA will be subject to a GH₵400 deduction to pay for MODEM, according to trustworthy information that is readily available. Once more, the unions claim that for teachers to utilize the internet with their TM1 laptops, they must have a MODEM. This is disturbing, as it represents a deliberate attempt to deprive and rob teachers of their meagre PDAs.
The three teacher unions are taking on too much. *Do teachers require a *MODEM* to power the internet?* With the introduction of smartphones, mobile HOTSPOT has become common knowledge, and the use of MODEM is now viewed as antiquated and outdated. What therefore inspired the unions to even “THINK ABOUT MODEM” in the first place? What they’re really after is the PDA in broad daylight, not the MODEM for teachers. They have also realized that teachers are feeble, reserved, and will accept anything at all.
We wish to remind teachers in Ghana that the three so-called teacher unions, GNAT, NAGRAT, and CCT, are to blame for our professional issues. They are very cleverly accumulating fortune by using our support to push irrational policies while appearing to be on our side. If we don’t wake up from our slumber and look sharp, we will continue to suffer at the hands of these unions. DO WE REALLY HAVE a choice, teachers? We do, indeed. Therefore, we must not allow GNAT, NAGRAT, and CCT to plunder us carelessly every day.
Sir Evans Davis
(Teachers’ Author Series)