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The General Secretary of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), Thomas Musah, wants the government to treat concerns about food shortages in some Senior High Schools as a genuine emergency.
Speaking on the Citi Breakfast Show, he said the recent agitations from his union are only in the interest of students.
“When we bring these things up, it is not to bring somebody down, but it is to bring to the attention of the duty bearers that the conditions under which our children are learning in our SHSs and our basic schools are not the best.”
Mr. Musah said complaints have come from the Eastern, Ashanti, Northern, Central regions, among others.
Messages from students and parents on the Citi Breakfast Show also suggested that the dining hall menus in some schools were unsatisfactory.
“My ward has become very slim, and I know it is because of malnutrition,” one parent said.
Some schools are facing shortages of either non-perishable foods, which are supplied by the National Food Buffer Stock Company, or perishable food items, which the schools purchase with funds from the state.
In response to some authorities downplaying the concerns, Mr. Musah said a defensive approach was needless.
“The duty bearers should stop defending and taking that kind of posture being put up. It will not help anybody. We all have a stake. We all believe that we need to do something to help our children learn and learn well.”
The concerns with feeding in senior high schools compelled GNAT to give the government a September 1 ultimatum to tackle the problem.
Mr. Musah had earlier criticised the Ghana Education Service for continuing to deny claims of food shortage in some schools.
Mr. Musah hasn’t indicated what his union’s line of action will be after the ultimatum elapses on Wednesday, September 1, 2021.
He, however, said the National Labour Commission has invited teacher unions for a meeting following the concerns raised.
“This morning, I have just seen a letter indicating that the teacher unions have been invited to the Labour Commission. I am yet to study the letter, and we will take it up from there,” he said.