3rd year Polytechnic students to undertake National Service

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Mr Samuel Okudzeto AblakwaDeputy Minister in-charge of Tertiary Education, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has said that final year polytechnic students of  the 2013/14 academic year will undertake their national service in 2014.

According to him, the students who have not completed their polytechnic education will be posted to regions where their schools are located so as to be able to combine the final academic work and national service.

Polytechnic Teachers have been on strike since May 15, 2014 demanding payment of their book and research allowances which are in arrears.

The strike has led to the closure of all polytechnics in the country leaving the students academic work in limbo.

Speaking on the  Citi Breakfast Show on Tuesday on the fate of final year students who have not been able to complete their academic work as a result of the strike but are expected to join the National Service Scheme (NSS) in September, Mr Ablakwa noted that the NSS has been instructed to ensure that polytechnic students are posted to the regions where their schools are located.

“…so that if you are in Accra Poly you are posted in Accra, if you are in Tamale Poly you are posted in the Northern Region, if you are in Takoradi Poly, you are posted in the Western Region. So that as and when this matter is resolved, you can quickly take leave and write the exams and return to the field for your national service.

“…we are a bit concerned because the academic year is about to begin and this matter has not been resolved. But as I said, we are still talking behind the scenes, but it has become complicated as these matters are now in the bosom of the courts,’’ he said.

In July, the Human Rights Division of the Accra High Court declared that the strike embarked upon by the Polytechnic Teachers Association of Ghana (POTAG) was legal after the National Labour Commission (NLC) had petitioned the court to declare the strike as illegal and order the lecturers to go back to the classroom.

The court rather ordered the NLC to enter a compulsory arbitration procedure, provided for under Regulation 26 of the NLC Regulations, 2006 (LI 1822), with POTAG to resolve the impasse.

Meanwhile, President of the Polytechnic Teachers Association of Ghana (POTAG), James Dugrah, says teachers  will not return to the classroom unless government pays their book and research allowance.

According to him, the book and research allowance is the ‘’basic tool’’ for the work of the teachers.

‘’I think you know want goes into teaching; if you don’t research can you go and teach. If you don’t research how can you just get up and go and be teaching…,’’ he told the host of the Citi Breakfast Show, Bernard Avle, on Tuesday.

He explained that government is deliberately ‘’dragging its feet’’ in paying POTAG. “People borrowed moneyto do that and you dragging your feet to pay; is it fair,’’ he inquired.


By: Evans Effah

ABOUT: Nana Kwesi Coomson

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A Freelance Journalist, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist. Editor-in-Chief of www.233times.com. A contributory writer for Ghanaian Chronicle Newspaper. An alumnus of Adisadel College where he read General Arts. He holds first degree in Bachelor of Arts from the University of Ghana; Political Science (major) and History (minor). He has also pursued MSc Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Energy with Public Relations (PR) at the Robert Gordon University in the United Kingdom. His mentors are Rupert Murdoch, Warren Buffet, Sam Jonah, Kwaku Sakyi Addo and Piers Morgan

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