The National Lottery Authority (NLA) will lose close to 13 per cent of its revenue threshold each week if the National Lotto Receivers Union (NLRU) and the lotto marketing companies (LMCs) do not call off their strike.
Although the percentage loss could not be quantified in real figures as a result of confidentiality, sources at the authority told the Daily Graphic that the NLA would be able to achieve an 87 per cent revenue threshold, in spite of the strike.
Members of the NLRU and the LMCs began an indefinite nation-wide strike last Thursday, July 7, 2011 to protest against the reduction in the commission paid to them by the NLA.
According to them, the NLA had failed to address the concerns they raised regarding the downward review of their commission from 25 to 20 per cent.
In addition to the strike, the receivers also resolved to withdraw their trading capitals from the NLA's business.
But speaking to the Daily Graphic in Accra on Wednesday, the Communications Director of the NLA, Mr Reagan Twum Barimah, said the authority had been able to achieve more than 80 per cent of its daily revenue as of Friday, July 8, 2011.
He, therefore, called on the NLRU and the LMCs to reconsider their stance and call off the strike as they were important stakeholders in the lottery industry.
He explained that the decision to pay 20 per cent commission had been implemented since April this year, without any complaint and expressed surprise at the new development.
According to Mr Twum Barimah, the two bodies could call off their strike and resume operation while negotiations with the NLA continued.
Meanwhile, the national executive of the NLRU has asked officials of the NLA to desist from the smear campaign being targeted at the union.
Rather, they called on the authority to engage the union to address the problem, instead of using media platforms to fight its cause.
Making the appeal in an interview with the Daily Graphic, the National Chairman of the NLRU, Mr Daniel Mensah, said members had resolved to continue the strike until their concerns were addressed.
He described the assertion that automation machines had been supplied to members of the union free of charge, thereby necessitating the need for a reduction in their commission, as false.
We use our own money to purchase the booklets before selling to the public for commission, yet NLA officials do not appreciate it, Mr Mensah, who spoke for the executive, stated.
A Ghana News Agency story published in the Daily Graphic on July 12, 2011 quoted the Communication Director of the NLA as having indicated that the NLRU earning 20 per cent on any amount sold is better than withdrawing its service.
Mr Mensah said the stance of the authority was a disincentive to the union which had, over the last 25 years, enjoyed the 25 per cent commission.
He indicated that the association had since 2000 enjoyed the 25 per cent following persistent negotiations that led to an eventual review of the Lotto Act 237 of 1961 in 2006.
We were receiving the 25 per cent even before the automation system was introduced, he explained.
While calling on members of the NLRU to continue with the strike, Mr Mensah similarly charged them to go for their June commission from the authority to ease their financial difficulties.
Source: Daily Graphic/Ghana
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