UTG staff agree on sit down strike from Thursday, no exams

Jun 29, 2021, 11:04 AM | Article By: Adama Tine

At an extraordinary congress conducted by the Staff Association of The University of The Gambia Faculty on Monday, following their ongoing problems with the management, the association says that it has collectively agreed to hold an indefinite sit-down-strike from Thursday until the issues are resolved.

Dr. Alieu Gibba, president of The University of The Gambia Faculty and Staff Association, said the main objective of the decision taken by the association is to correct all the wrongs happening in the UTG. “Previously we used to have these problems and when they see that the staff are united on their stand, they usually solve the problem just as they did two years ago,” he divulged.

According to him, the staff association will write to the students since they are key stakeholders to inform them that a decision has been taken by the staff association that they would not be coming to school indefinitely starting from next Thursday until ‘our problems are solved’.

He said UTG problem is a national problem because UTG is a state asset in which the National Assembly is a part to formulate laws and enact the Tertiary Institutions Act, which the select committee is responsible for.

“We invited them to the UTG two years ago but they never came, we went back to them and had a two hours meeting with them upon which they again promised to come but yet to no avail. But it’s important for them to understand that we want them to come and see what’s happening here, have dialogue with the staff as well as meet the academic management and the students,” he noted,

The vice president of the staff association and senior lecturer at the UTG, Ensa Touray, said university is a micro stage with its constitute organs “but once those organs are captured in the UTG policy and are not firmly established within the framework of that policy, the UTG will continue to paralyse.”

He said university should exist as an autonomous body and all the structures there must be established according to what is enshrined in the UTG policy. “But at this point in time, the actors especially the Ministry of Higher Education should be leading the cause of ensuring all the reforms in the university.”

“The university governing council is the regulatory force and the regulatory agency body of the university management but that it exists as a body without actually a required legitimacy because its establishment in the first place shouldn’t have been a situation that the minister will have to do the selection and the interim shouldn’t be more than one year after being there for more than four years now,” he said.

Below are some of the listed demands by the Staff of the University of The Gambia:

MOHERST to pay UTG arrears in full

MOHERST owed UTG over 150 million dalasis

Interim Governing Council to be dissolved and replaced with a substantive Governing Council. It has been interim for four years or so.

The Registrar to completely handover the UTG Human Resource administration back to the Director of HR. The Director of HR is to report to the DVC administration and/or the Vice Chancellor

Replacement of retired Deans or Acting Deans and Heads of Department that are heading positions in the University. UTG conditions of service does not allow them to hold a university office.

  1. Holders of double positions at the UTG should relinquish one.  Holding of double positions in the UTG is killing potential qualified staff from applying or occupying those positions
  2. Election of Deans and Head of Departments (HODs).Majority of the Dean and HODs are in acting capacities without confirmation. They should either be confirmed or their positions be filled.
  3. Establishment of Staff Tribunal at the UTGUTG Staff has no independent tribunal to recourse to when their rights are violated. The establishment of the Staff Tribunal will ensure that staff rights are protected and respected.
  4. Independent audit of the UTG Salary Scale and grades to ensure fairness in the payments. However, there are many inconsistencies in the salaries paid to individuals less or more than the prescribed scales.
  5. The Position of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Admin & Finance be advertised. The advertisement of the Vice-Chancellor to be put to hold until the proper procedures are followed. It has to be advertised for 12 months
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