By Momodou Jarju
Lecturers have resumed at the Gambia College yesterday Wednesday May 15, 2019, reliable sources informed Foroyaa.
The oldest tertiary learning institute in the country has over the past three days been on the headline due to its lecturers embarking on a sit-down strike and students subsequently planning to stage a demonstration which was later called off.
The students wanted to demonstrate because they were not having lectures since they resumed school two weeks ago and also demanded for permanent solutions to the problems they have been grappling with at the college.
While the lecturers, who since the new semester opened two weeks ago, were demanding assurance of the ending of late payment of their salaries plus payment of the 50% salary increment Government promised for civil servants as of January 2019.
The breakthrough came after the minister of higher education, Mr Badara Joof and his permanent secretary plus the chairman of the college governing council had a meeting that lasted for hours with the administration and the students’ union to discuss the matter.
The chairperson of the academic staff association, Andrew Gomez said lectures have started and everything is under control.
Sources told Foroyaa that some of them didn’t have lectures yesterday but Gomez explained that the schools of public health, nursing and midwifery and agriculture had lectures.
The president of the press club, Babucarr Jammeh, and the education minister of the students’ union, Bakary Badjie, also confirmed this claim.
Gomez added that: “When a strike is called off, we expect the turn out not to be very much, but learning has started.”
He said even some of the students from the school of education had lectures; however, he said some of the students were still registering for the semester while others were copying for the original timetable.
Notwithstanding, press club president Jammeh opined that effective learning would start on Monday.
Meanwhile, minister Badjie said they held a meeting yesterday which was aimed at strengthening the relationship among students, sub-associations at the college and the administration so that when such unfortunate circumstance occurs, they would address the matter amicably.
Nonetheless, he said, they have also committed themselves to monitor the progression of the promises outlined by the officials from the ministry of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology and the Gambia College Governing Council.