The newly elected president of the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG), University of Cape Coast (UCC) chapter, and Head of the Department of Communication Studies, UCC, Dr. Eric Opoku Mensah, has been sworn in as the National UTAG President.
At this year’s national UTAG congress held at the University of Cape Coast on Friday, 22nd September, 2017, UTAG – UCC took over the mantle of leadership from their colleagues at the UEW as the national UTAG executives for the next two years.
Addressing the gathering, Dr. Opoku Mensah expressed concern at the current crisis at the University of Education, Winneba, saying that it had the dangerous potential derailing the vision and strategic plan of the university for years to come if concrete steps are not taken to solve the problem.
Citing the current dwindling nature of fundings for universities globally, he stated that there is the need for the union to come together to work for the development of tertiary institutions and strategically position itself to attract the needed fund rather than working hard to disintegrate one of our finest public institutions.
He reserved further comments on the UEW issue, saying that the substantive case is yet to be determined in court. He expressed the union’s belief in the court to settle the matter.
“UTAG believes in the laws of Ghana and for that matter the legal system. We trust that the decision of the court coupled with the diplomatic path being pursued by the Vice Chancellors Ghana will show great light in the midst of the current darkness at the University of Education, Winneba”.
The new National President outlined his administration’s vision for the union for the next two years.
Regarding the conditions of service for lecturers, he mentioned that their salaries and book and research allowances are no longer attractive as they used to be some decades ago. He, therefore expressed his administration’s commitment to work with government and other stakeholders to improve on the situation.
“It is absolutely clear that the conditions of services for lecturers in Ghana have seriously eroded. We will negotiate vigorously to get the best for these and other conditions of service for our members and those who seek to join the academic profession in the near future, he said.
Again, Dr. Opoku Mensah emphasized the need for members of the association to take part in national discourse. This, he said, would help to contribute their expertise to aid in national development.
“UTAG needs to set a new agenda. We need to occupy a new place in Ghanaian expertise to contribute to key national policies. We will create to integrate major issues which confront the nation”, he indicated.
In his remarks, the Chairman for the programme and Vice- Chancellor of UCC, Prof. Joseph Ghartey-Ampiah congratulated the outgoing national executives and expressed excitement that the chair of the association has come to Cape Coast.
He stated that UCC is ready for the task ahead because the incoming president has prepared adequately for the position.
Source: Godfred Mawugbe|Choicism.com