Organized Labour rejects gov’t 18% pay increase in basic salary

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The government’s plan for an 18% increase in the base wage of public sector employees has been rejected by organized labor.

In a Wednesday bargaining meeting, Organized Labor insisted that they would not accept an increase of less than 60%.

He observed that the Civil and Local Government Staff Association, Ghana (CLOGSAG) had revised its initial demand from 60% to 65% in an interview with a representative of the organization.

However, he made it clear that they would be consulting over the government’s offer.

“As you are aware, we have read the budget and there is an indication that there will be an increase in VAT of 2.5 … so this is fresh information that they have brought to that table. Because the budget has indicated certain issues in relation to VAT and the tax bracket to increase our burden,” CLOGSAG’s spokesperson said.

Additionally, Isaac Owusu, president of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), opposed the proposal but stated that the Union’s leadership will meet with its members to determine the best course of action.

We don’t speak for ourselves; rather, we speak for the majority of the country’s teachers, thus we must adhere to Organized Labor’s position, he stated.

The Trades Union Congress delegate reiterated that they will stand by their demand.

“We’ve been considerate for years and many things have gone wrong, so I think that this is the time to right the wrongs. The Single Spine Salary Structure is the most indecent structure in this country and we think that this is the opportune time to right the wrongs. So we have not been difficult…we are the same people that took the four and seven percent and so we won’t take anything below 60%,” he stated.

However, Bright Wireko Brobby, the Deputy Employment Minister, said he is troubled by the course of events.

“We have met but labour insists on a figure, so we will go back and reconvene …We have tabled something and labour says that they are unwilling to take it. So it is a clear state of frustration, of course, you do not expect me to be happy when there is this state of affairs,” Mr Brobbey stated.

After earlier attempts to resolve the issue were unsuccessful, the two sides convened to discuss the best course of action.

The Trades Union Congress (TUC) issued a warning before the meeting on Wednesday, stating that it will not accept the government’s estimates in the 2023 Budget.

When reading the 2023 Budget to the House of Representatives, Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta estimated that employee pay would be GH44,990 million (5.6% of GDP).

Joshua Ansah, the TUC’s deputy general secretary, said in a media interview on Tuesday that the organization would not accept the predicted amount.

Mr. Ansah asserts that if the government insists on paying anything less than 60%, there would be a war.

He stated that Organized Labor’s demand for a 60% increase in basic salary will not be conceded.


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