The Forum for Public Sector Associations and Unions (Forum) has petitioned the Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations to ensure parity among labour unions in the celebration of May Day, starting with the 2021 event scheduled for Saturday, May 1.
The Forum says May Day, which celebrates the contribution of workers to national development must be national in character by involving all the three major labour associations or centres in the country.
The petition listed the three centres as the Trades Union Congress (TUC), the Ghana Federation of Labour and the Forum.
It said just like the Forum, each of the centres was made up of many national unions, and as such any celebration that did not involve all three was unfair to workers.
The petition, which was dated April 16, 2021, was addressed to the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Mr Ignatius Baffour-Awuah.
The Daily Graphic understands that Mr Awuah has scheduled to meet the executive of the petitioners alongside those of the other two centers to help find an amicable solution ahead of the May Day celebrations.
According to the Forum, any May Day celebration that brought together all three centres would bring the required national character into the celebration and also recognise the plurality in trade centres.
The Chairman of the Forum, Mr Isaac Bampoe Addo, in an interview with the Daily Graphic in Accra, observed that the Forum was going into the meeting on Monday with a clear plan to negotiate for inclusiveness in the organisation of the May Day celebration.
He explained that it was time for the country to recognise trade centres’ plurality and give equal recognition to all during the celebration of workers’ day.
“We think that starting from this year, the organisation of May Day celebrations should be done under the auspices of the three centres,” he said.
Public sector workers
The Forum has been registered with the Federation of Trade Unions since September 3, 2020, as the third trade centre in Ghana.
Per the number of unions under the Forum, it is by some distance the biggest trade centre for public sector workers in Ghana.
Indeed, its members also make up the majority of the government's payroll staff.
The Forum is made up of Civil and Local Government Staff Association (CLOGSAG); Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT); Ghana Medical Association (GMA); Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association (GRNMA); National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT); Judicial Service Staff Association of Ghana (JUSSAG); Coalition of Concerned Teachers Ghana (CCT); and Ghana Hospitals Pharmacists Association (GHOSPA).
“It is in this context that the Forum believes that May Day celebrations will take on a national character by recognising all labour centres in Ghana,” he said.
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