The Trades Unions Congress (TUC) has tabled strong demands on key sectors of the economy before President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, which it believes are critical to move the country forward.
During a meeting at the Flagstaff House yesterday, Secretary General of the TUC, Dr Yaw Baah identified seven issues the union would like government to pay urgent attention to, including a redundancy package for all staff to be affected by the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) concession.
Strengthening of tripartite committee
The first issue Dr Baah raised had to do with how the tripartite committee, made up of government, employers and Organised Labour, can work together to ensure industrial peace.
This, the union believes, can happen through constant dialogue between them and government.
NLC staff be made full-time workers
TUC also wants the National Labour Commission (NLC) to be reformed, including Amending Act 651 to make all members of the commission full-time workers for the commission.
Redundancy package for ECG staff
The third demand by the TUC is about the ECG concession. The TUC Secretary General stated that the Labour Act (Act 651) provides that in the event of reorganisation, such as the ECG concession, incumbent staff must be paid redundancy benefits.
The union, therefore, appealed to government to intervene to ensure that the union is properly engaged so that Ghana can benefit fully from the compact.
TUC against sale of VRA thermal plants
The TUC also says government’s plan to search for a transaction advisor for the sale of specific thermal plants owned by the Government of Ghana/Volta River Authority (VRA) cannot be supported by them.
The union insists that VRA is more than capable of managing these plants efficiently and effectively.
Radical reforms at SSNIT
The TUC is also demanding radical reforms at the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT).
The union has proposed the formation of a stakeholders’ committee charged with the responsibility of reviewing board decisions and operations of SSNIT.
In addition to annual audits, TUC called for external evaluators to evaluate SSNIT’s operations at least once every four years.
According to the union, the appointment of Director General, Deputy Director General and senior management staff should be made by the board or nominated by the board for appointment by the President.
TUC wants the board of SSNIT to be expanded to include at least two more representatives of workers and employers.
Tier 2 pension
The fifth demand by the TUC is about second-tier pension schemes for public sector workers.
According to the TUC, government owes the scheme millions of Ghana cedis, and government needs to start a very serious dialogue with the public sector unions with the aim of finding a lasting solution to this problem.
Stop fake textiles
The sixth demand by the TUC is for the government to prevent fake textiles from entering the country.
The seventh demand had to do with occupational health and safety (OHS). They observed that the Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations completed a draft OHS bill that was supposed to be presented to cabinet in the previous administration.
TUC implored government to ensure that the bill is reconsidered if need be and passed into law in order to protect the working people of Ghana.
ECG workers won't be disadvantaged in privatisation - President assures
In response, President Akufo-Addo assured that the move to privatise ECG would not place any worker of the company at a disadvantage.
He said government would ensure that the interests of all workers of the ECG are protected and that none is worse off after the company is privatised under the second compact of the Millennium Challenge Corporation, which is geared at achieving power supply efficiency.
Employment and Labour Relations Minister, Ignatius Baffour-Awuah, who briefed the media after the closed-door meeting, said the President was emphatic that he would ensure that no ECG worker is made worse off as a result of the privatisation of the national power distributor.
Source: The Finder
|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.|