Strike forces University of Ghana to shift freshmen lectures online

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The University of Ghana is currently navigating a challenging situation as the ongoing industrial action taken by the Senior Staff Association and the Teachers’ and Educational Workers Union (TEWU) has necessitated a significant shift in its approach to education delivery. In response to the strike, the university’s administration has made a strategic decision to transition lectures for freshmen to an online format.

This move to online lectures is a direct consequence of the strike action that has seen the Senior Staff Association and TEWU, two prominent bodies within the university’s staff structure, cease their in-person duties. The shift to digital platforms for delivering lectures is aimed at minimizing the disruption to the academic calendar and ensuring that students’ education continues uninterrupted.

However, the industrial action has had broader implications beyond the alteration of lecture formats. One of the most notable changes is the reduction in the operating hours of the university library. Previously accessible for 14 hours, the library’s contact hours have now been curtailed to 9 hours. This reduction poses a significant challenge for students, particularly those who rely heavily on the library’s resources for their academic work.

The situation escalated on Tuesday, January 24, when the Legon Branch of the Senior Staff Association and TEWU were reportedly halted by the police during a demonstration, which was conducted without a permit. The groups involved have strongly refuted these allegations, maintaining their stance and denying any wrongdoing in their actions.

The impact of the strike is already being felt among the student body, with numerous students voicing their concerns about how these developments are affecting their studies. The anxiety among students is palpable, as they worry about the potential long-term effects on their academic performance and progress.

Ken Botchway, Chairman of TEWU-Legon, has expressed a stern warning, emphasizing the seriousness of their demands. He stated that if the government fails to meet their requests, they would be compelled to take more drastic measures, including the locking up of examination and lecture halls. Botchway’s statement underscores the depth of their commitment to their cause, highlighting the potential for further escalation if their conditions are not met.

Botchway articulated the sentiment of the aggrieved parties, saying, “This is my working environment, I hold a condition of service, this is what is supposed to be done. There are managers in place, and if the managers are tempering with the condition of service, we will withdraw our services and that is it. No exam will go on. All the examination halls will be locked up. All the necessary tools that will be used for the examination will be locked up. Yes, that is what is going to happen. It is not a threat but we don’t want to get there.”

The situation at the University of Ghana thus remains tense and uncertain, with the university’s administration, the striking staff, and the student body all grappling with the implications of this industrial action. The transition to online lectures for freshmen is just one of the many adaptations the university has had to make in response to this challenging situation. The potential for further escalation looms large, contingent on the response of the government and the university’s management to the demands of the Senior Staff Association and TEWU.

Video Source :Joy Online


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