Negotiation For Workers' Allowances To Start After SSSS Migration

Negotiations for allowances for public sector workers would begin when all the workers are migrated to the Single Spine Salary Structure (SSSS). Dr. Yaw Baah, Deputy Secretary-General of the Ghana Trades Union Congress (GTUC), disclosed this at a meeting of the Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolitan Council of Labour at Takoradi on Tuesday. He said so far, about 91 per cent of public sector workers have been placed on the SSSS, and "Delay in placing workers on the SSSS has caused the delay in negotiating for allowances". Dr Baah said, it came to light at a meeting of the GTUC and representatives of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) during the agitation for the full restoration of subsidy on fuel that Government withdrew the subsidy as part of the IMF conditionality. He said the IMF was of the view that subsidy on fuel could benefit the rich at the expense of the poor, and funds that would be accrued as a result of the withdrawal of the subsidy could be used for the National Health Insurance Scheme and the School Feeding Programme and other poverty reduction interventions. He said the GTUC was of the view that all Ghanaians should benefit from fuel subsidy and not only the rich, and it was doubtful if the poor would benefit from the subsidy because of corruption. Dr. Baah said, IMF also complained about the high Government expenditure on the SSSS, and expressed doubt if Government would be able to sustain the scheme. He said arguments by the IMF are untenable because salaries are payment for services rendered by workers, and the GTUC would continue to negotiate for salary increases as and when it was necessary to do so and added that "The GTUC would not sit down for the IMF to stop the SSSS." Dr Baah announced that the GTUC Quadrennial Congress would be held between August 11 and 17 this year, and executives of the Union in 122 districts would be elected before the congress. He said this year's National May Day would take place at Sunyani. An election was conducted at the Sekondi-Takoradi Labour Council meeting and Mr Charles Thompson was elected Chairman of the Metropolitan Council of Labour, Mr Daniel Acheampong, First Vice Chairman, Madam Comfort Esi Yankey, Second Vice Chairperson, Mr Albert Bondze, Secretary, Mr Michael Ahinkrah, Assistant Secretary and Mr Samuel Tetteh Agbetor, Treasurer.