Stop Harassing Us With BNI – NAGRAT

The National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) has expressed displeasure about the way and manner head counts and inspection of certificates of teachers of public schools are being conducted. It has therefore asked the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) to stop harassing the members.

According to NAGRAT, teachers across the country are being harassed unduly by officials of the BNI, the Public Services Commission and the Ghana Education Service (GES) who are undertaking the inspection exercises on behalf of Government.

General Secretary of NAGRAT, Stanislaus P. Nabome, made this known at a press conference in Accra yesterday.

He reported that ‘the exercises obfuscate teachers because they place them under avoidable stress and go on to affect performance.’

Mr. Nabome indicated that ‘teachers are further made to queue for hours on end to have their turn with their validators who spew out all manner of threats to innocent teachers, to the extent that the BNI now perambulates schools brandishing handcuffs as if visiting a bunch of hardened criminals.’

He claimed that the entire exercise is selective due to the fact that only teachers out of the battalion of public servants, were being singled out and counted in an exercise that seeks to get rid of ghost names from the system.

According to him, ‘The Association notes with grave concern that the exercise is highly selective. While teachers are subjected to such scrutiny on daily basis, all other public sector workers go untouched.’

NAGRAT also lamented the entire exercise saying it was causing huge financial loss to the state which is already crawling on its knees trying to revive its economy from reckless spending.

Mr. Nabome said, ‘We observe with disdain that these head counts and inspection of certificates are of huge costs to government and teachers. As a result of these exercises, a large group of people travel from one place to the other using state vehicles and fuel.’

He added, ‘It is expected that they are paid salaries and allowances which could have been put to better use.’

On their part, he cried, teachers have to travel every now and then to have themselves counted and their certificates inspected, complaining that ‘such journeys are undertaken at non-refundable costs to teachers.’

According to him, ‘As a result of these head counts and inspection of certificates, a lot of contact hours are lost, which will eventually lead to poor performances in schools.’

NAGRAT therefore, called on the Ministry of Education, the GES and all managers of education in Ghana ‘to treat teachers and all educational workers in the country with some respect and put an end to the needless harassment.’

Mr. Nabome said, ‘We propose that a single designated body is selected and made known to the staff of the Ghana Education Service for the conduct of any head count or inspection of certificates.’

BY Melvin Tarlue

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