Three teacher unions have asked the Public Services Commission (PSC) to immediately suspend the implementation of the Human Resource Management Information System (HRMIS) for Ghana Education Service (GES) employees.
The teacher unions are the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) Coalition of Concern Teachers of Ghana (CCT-GH) and the Teachers and Education Workers Union (TEWU).
“If by Friday, September 20,4 2019, and this suspension has not been done, we will organise ourselves and picket at the PSC to drive home our demand,” the General Secretary of GNAT, Mr David Ofori Acheampong speaking on the behalf of the groups stated this at a press conference in Accra on Tuesday [September 10, 2019].
He warned that if it was not suspended, and the picketing should come off and nothing was done after five days of the picketing, “we will let you know our line of action”.
The press conference was jointly organised to address concerns of teachers relating to adjusting of salaries as a result of promotions, payments for newly recruited GES staff and general concerns regarding the new software being used by the PSC.
Mr Acheampong explained that the designers of the HRMIS did not take into consideration, the peculiarities of the GES in the design before GES was migrated onto the system.
He acknowledged that the HRMIS was to provide an accurate data on employees that the government had engaged so that at any time if there were vacancies in any establishment, it could be verified for the replacement to be done in a transparent manner.
Mr Acheampong further explained that the software was also to prevent institutional heads from recruiting without financial clearance from the Ministry of Finance, especially when no vacancy existed to be filled.
He said the software would also enable the PSC to confirm the vacancy before the recruitment could be made by those heads.
But, Mr Acheampong was of the firm belief that, “the system as designed in its present form is not compatible with the scheme of service in the GES and therefore. We have challenges working with it
“In the GES, if an Assistant Director II retires and he is teaching let us say Mathematics, he can conveniently be replaced by a Principal Superintendent or even an Assistant Director I, with the same qualification.
“If an Assistant Director I, who is a class three teacher retires, he can be replaced with a Principal Superintendent with the same qualification and the work goes on,” he explained.
Mr Acheampong further explained that it was only in the GES that “if you are doing the core job of teaching when you are promoted, your job does not change,”
“In its present design, if an Assistant Director II retires, you cannot replace him with any other staff with same qualification but a different rank or grade except an Assistant Director II.
“Our colleagues non-teaching staff of the GES are also facing problems of recruitment because the system is not creating additional vacancies to enable GES to recruit staff to augment the heavy workload as a result of the introduction of the Double Track system.
“These are the stark realities confronting the GES thereby creating delays with respect to promotions and upgrading, transfers, and subsequent changes to management unit numbers leading to non-verification of employees on the payroll, non-payment of salaries and hosts of others,” Mr Acheampong explained.
He recalled that somewhere in July this year, the GNAT raised a concern about it and the government requested the PSC to suspend the project to enable GES to input promotions and upgrading, update employees’ records with respect to transfers and change of management unit numbers on the payroll.
“However, this request has not been carried through by the PSC resulting in the undue delay in the processing and payment of all types of arrears,” Mr Acheampong stated.