Dr. Yaw Baah, the Secretary General of the Trades Union Congress (TUC), has expressed gratitude to the government for the 30% pay raise for public sector employees.
He said that even if they had anticipated considerably more growth, the 30% will spur workers to put in extra effort to get the economy back to where it was before the Covid epidemic.
On January 12, when the increase was announced in Accra, he remarked, “Even if the 30% is not exactly what we expected, it will give us the chance to speak one language and work together to ensure that our country returns to where we were before the Covid.
“On behalf of my people, I will like to say a big thank you to government for this offer, we are very grateful.”
“The Leadership of organized Labour would like to express our sincere thanks to government for granting 30% increase in base pay for 2023 for public sector workers. We are happy that it has ended peacefully today. The 30% even though it is not what we want, it will create that opportunity for us to speak one language to work together.”
The government’s collaboration with labor unions to determine the 30% pay increase was acknowledged by Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta.
He said that the administration wanted to maintain harmony on the labor front, therefore the 30% raise.
In a meeting with labor unions on Thursday, January 12, following eleven rounds of fruitless discussions, Minister of Employment and Labor Relations Ignatius Baffour-Awuah announced the increase.
The increment becomes effective on January 1, 2023.
“The base pay has been increased by 30% for the 2023 financial year…As I said this brings to an end the 2022 COLA of 15% of base pay salary,” Ignatius Baffour-Awuah, the minister of employment, made the announcement immediately after the decision was made.
Organized Labor initially requested a 60% percent increase and held firm to that demand despite several interactions with the government throughout the base wage discussions.
The public sector employees chose to lower their initial 60% demand to 58% after rejecting the government’s initial 18% offer.
Organized Labor did, however, agree to a 30% rise in the basic wage following their meeting with the government on Thursday, which also included Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta, who had skipped all prior meetings.
Dr. Isaac Bampoe-Addo, executive secretary of the Civil and Local Government Staff Association of Ghana (CLOGSAG), assured the delegation of the government that “we will collaborate with them to develop ideas to improve revenue generation. We know the next time we meet for base pay negotiations, it will be a better story.”
The increase will strain the nation’s budget, the finance minister said at the meeting.
“As I stated, this would put a strain on the budget, but we are certain that we would increase productivity and the promise that we both have made to ensure that there is peace in this nation as we look at pension and labor concerns,” Ken Ofori-Atta added.
The government said that by making this decision, the 15% Cost of Living Allowance (COLA) for public sector employees has ended.
Source: Ghanatodayonline.com/Louis Gyamerah