June 20, 2024
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Teachers should receive the most remuneration, not politicians, engineers – Dr Apaak

Member of Parliament (MP) for Builsa South Constituency in the Upper East Region, Dr Clement Abas Apaak is strongly advocating for teachers to receive the highest remuneration among all professions.

He argued that the teaching profession should be celebrated and valued above politicians, engineers, doctors and architects, as these professionals are trained and produced by teachers.

Speaking on JoyNews’ Newsfile on Saturday, Dr. Apaak pointed out that countries known for their exemplary teaching practices often prioritise the working and service conditions of teachers.

He expressed concern that Ghana does not seem to give due consideration to adequately motivating and supporting its teachers.

“We need to reconfigure because this is not acceptable, it is not best practice and so why are we maintaining a structure that is not going to motivate and encourage the teachers to give out their best.

“They are doing a lot already but we know they can do even better so what is holding us back as a nation, as a society in putting our money where our mouth is,” Dr Apaak said.

He stated that Ghana has failed to recognise the crucial role, values and indispensable contributions of teachers, which has led to their mass exodus.

The Builsa South Constituency MP noted that teachers face the same economic challenges and hardships as other Ghanaians, including high levels of inflation.

He firmly believed that increasing teachers’ remuneration in the country could help resolve the problem of teacher shortages and mass exodus.

Dr. Apaak also concurred with the President of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), Reverend Isaac Owusu, who disputed the claims made by the Education Minister, Dr. Yaw Adutwum, that Ghana does not have a teacher shortage but rather a deployment challenge.

Dr Adutwum speaking during the Ghana Teachers Prize event organised in Takoradi said the country can boost of more trained teachers than most countries in the world.

But Rev Owusu speaking on Newsfile said that teacher distribution is the problem stating “Nobody can tell us in Ghana that we do not have teacher shortage.”

“What we know as a union is that there are a lot of classrooms that are begging for teachers and the conditions that the current teachers are in are not best. If indeed we have a lot of teachers in Ghana, then the government should open up and put these teachers there and fill the vacancies,” he said.

In regard to this, Dr. Apaak cited examples from his own constituency, Builsa South, where teacher shortage was evident.

He called on the Education Minister to take proactive measures to address the teacher distribution problem and ensure that teachers posted to rural areas fulfill their responsibilities effectively.

“The Minister shouldn’t lament with us, we should not be hearing the minister tell us that there’s no shortage but rather the issue has to do with distribution.

“What is he doing to ensure that when teachers are posted to [rural villages], they take up those appointments, they go there and they stay to teach?,” he questioned.

Dr. Apaak emphasised the importance of recognising the teacher shortage issue in Ghana and urged the Education Minister to take concrete actions to address it, rather than downplaying its severity.

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