The new rule allows professional grade staff (Associate Professors and Professors) to lecture for another 10 years in line with constitutional provisions.

Until the current guidelines, some of those in this category of staff after they retired at 60, were given contracts. This came with challenges of payment in the light of their receiving pensions.

Consequently, the Auditor-General called for the cancellation of such post-retirement contracts.

The Education Minister, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh to Daily Graphic, that the new rule is part of measures to ensure that a critical mass of key academic staff are maintained.

This is to support the anticipated significant increase in tertiary enrolment as a consequence of the free senior high school (SHS) programme.

He said for the professorial category, “the initial contract shall be for five years up to the age of 65, and then afterwards contracts shall be offered on a 2+2+1 basis, subject to need and good health.”

He explained further that specific provision must be made for compensation for all staff on post-retirement contracts. He added that such staff should be accounted for separately as contract staff in the annual budget of the institutions.

He explained that the post-retirement contract was not automatic, “because if a university does not need your services or a Professor does not want to be engaged, then the contract will not be put in place”.

Dr Prempeh indicated that the new rule was important because the universities needed to increase their human resource capacity in research and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) supervision.

He added that this category of staff the contract was to ensure better student/lecture ratios since the tertiary institutions are preparing to receive the large cohort of free SHS products in the next academic year.

The National Council for Tertiary Education (NCTE) has therefore been tasked to create and implement a mechanism for monitoring output in those areas, following the implementation of the new regime for post-retirement contracts.