Madam Betty Busumtwi-Sam, Deputy Western Regional Minister, on Thursday, made a passionate appeal to the rank and file of the Polytechnic Teachers Association of Ghana (POTAG), to reconsider their industrial action in the spirit of patriotism and nation building.
She made the appeal at the launch of the Takoradi Polytechnic Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) certificate and diploma programmes at Takoradi.
Madam Busumtwi-Sam urged the POTAG to return to the negotiating table with the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission (FWSC) to complete outstanding issues.
She assured the association of government’s preparedness and commitment to resolve their concerns swiftly.
Madam Busumtwi-Sam said members of the POTAG should do away with the erroneous impression that government has little or no respect for polytechnic education simply because government has failed to set up a committee to deal with their problems, as it did in the case of the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG).
Madam Busumtwi-Sam said the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Government, under the leadership of Professor Atta Mills, is mindful of the critical role polytechnics are playing in the human resources development, especially the middle-level manpower, for the development of the national economy.
To this end, the government would not do anything that would thwart the efforts of the polytechnics in their quest to perform their statutory obligations, she said.
Madam Busumtwi-Sam asked the CILT to play its part in the road safety project through seminars and in-training courses for stakeholders in the transport and logistics sectors.
She noted that the CILT is responding to market-place challenges by developing a number of training programmes, including the certificate course in logistics.
Madam Busumtwi-Sam said the CILT should further engage institutions of higher education and commercial colleges to broaden the reach of its programmes across the country.
Launching the programme, Dr. George Oduro, Chairman of the Takoradi Polytechnic Council, said the introduction of the programme is to develop the skills and knowledge of actors in the transport sector and that it deserves the support of all.
He said the programme would equip participants to play key roles in the emerging oil and gas economy and also use the skills and knowledge acquired to develop the economy, among others.
Dr. Oduro hoped the industrial action of POTAG would be resolved for the programme to progress and make a positive impact on the public sector.
Mr Cletus Kuzagbe, President of CILT, Ghana, said CILT educational courses at the Takoradi Polytechnic would lead to the Institute’s professional qualifying examinations.
He said the polytechnic would start with the International Certificate and Diploma programme whiles the advance diploma would follow later.
Mr Kuzagbe said CILT programmes were introduced to meet the demand and needs of the transport and logistics industry in the country.
He said some of the key objectives of the programmes are to introduce professionalism into the transport and logistics industry and to educate people, who are already in the industry, but did not have any professional and academic qualification in transport and logistics.
Reverend Professor Daniel Oduro, Rector of the Polytechnic, said the launching of the programme was historic and that it was the first of such programmes to be started by the polytechnic, with special emphasis on the emerging oil and gas industry.