The Secretary General of the Trades Union Congress (TUC), Dr. Yaw Baah, has called for a total overhaul of the current pension system to benefit the working majority in the country, as he says the current scheme is unfair to low-income earning workers.
According to him, only a few privileged individuals are being paid huge sums of money from the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) scheme every month, at the expense of ordinary workers who are contributing from their meagre salaries.
Dr. Baah says it is unfair for such a system to continue operating, hence it must be changed for the good of all workers.
“We are demanding a total overhaul of the pension system. The current system is unfair to many workers. A few privileged individuals are being paid huge sums of money from the SSNIT scheme every month, at the expense of ordinary workers who are contributing to the scheme from their meagre salaries,” he said during a press conference organised by the TUC on Cost-of-Living Allowance (COLA) and the National Economic Situation.
He stated that the TUC and its member groups are ready to meet the authorities to properly put in place a better system that will benefit every worker.
On the IMF
Commenting on the International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout programme that the country is seeking, he said it will not solve the fundamental structural problems of the economy that is currently in place.
According to him, just like the previous programmes have always done, it will only prepare the country for another bailout to continue keeping them in business.
“IMF programmes will not deal with these fundamental structural issues. IMF programmes only prepare the country for the next bailout so that the IMF will continue to be in business,” he said.
Dr. Baah stated that the TUC is willing to lead the country’s working people in resisting any attempt to impose hardships on workers and the entire Ghanaian population. The TUC believes that IMF programmes and policies are completely separated from reality.
“We have already communicated our objections to the decision to seek an IMF bailout for the eighteenth time. We are convinced that an IMF programme will not solve our problems. It will only impose hardships on Ghanaians,” he stated.
Speaking on the economy and how best to grow it, the TUC boss said: “We insist that our main challenge in managing the economy has to do with corruption and failure – on the part of successive governments – to transform the economy’s structure so as to allow Ghanaians produce what we eat and eat what we produce”.
Although the TUC’s request for an increase in COLA has been granted after intense negotiations took place between Organised Labour and the respective ministries, it’s still calling on government to honour its promise to pay the lump-sum top-up to workers who retired in 2020 under the new pensions act, Act 766.
Concerning the Single Spine Salary Structure Review, Dr. Baah said: “The TUC and its affiliates have their eyes and minds firmly fixed on outcomes of the Single Spine Salary Review process currently underway. We are determined to work together with other Organised Labour groups to end the unfairness in remunerations for public sector workers on the Single Spine Salary Structure on one hand, and Article 71 office-holders and state-owned enterprises on the other hand”.
Dr. Baah however commended government for its timely intervention and positive attitude toward the negotiations that enabled the parties to reach a win-win deal. He also thanked all the unions and their members for the extraordinary display of unity that brought results.
Organised Labour led by the TUC reached an agreement with government for a 15 percent Cost of Living Allowance for all workers on the Single Spine Salary Structure (SSSS), effective July 1, 2022. This agreement led to the strike being called off.
|Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are those of the writers and do not reflect those of Peacefmonline.com. Peacefmonline.com accepts no responsibility legal or otherwise for their accuracy of content. Please report any inappropriate content to us, and we will evaluate it as a matter of priority.|