The Executive Secretary of the National Labour Commission (NLC), Ofosu Asamoah, has intimated that the Commission is unbiased towards the resolution of industrial conflicts and does not do anyone’s bidding.
Ofosu Asamoah averred that the Labour Commission is there for everyone; unions, employers and the government and it should not be forgotten that they at the commission are also workers and also belong to unions so it cannot be one-sided.
“So, the commission cannot be said to be doing the bid of the government when the union representatives are sitting there, nor will we be doing the bid of the unions when the government or employers’ representatives are sitting there.”Ofosu Asamoah
He indicated that there will not be a proper composition of the commission to sit and be able to hear or determine any dispute without the tripartite representation.
It can be recalled that UTAG began its industrial action on Monday, January 10, 2022 to demand better conditions of service. According to UTAG, the government has breached the timelines agreed for resolution.
Commenting on this, Mr. Asamoah accused UTAG of misinforming the public about the negotiation process. Ofosu Asamoah stated that UTAG is deliberately twisting the facts. He noted that the Ghana Statistical Service was commissioned to do a labour market survey (LMS) and submit a report to the Ministry in December. However, the report was not ready until 4th January 2022.
According to him, at the time that the UTAG requested the money was when the Ministry commissioned the survey to be done and had not even received the report.
“Some of the things, I don’t understand them [UTAG]. When you hear big names like professors, doctors and others, this is not what we expect from them. And upon their request, when the LMS report was received by the government on 4th January, immediately it was given to them, even when a hard copy was not ready, a soft copy was passed to them.”Ofosu Asamoah
The National Labour Commission (NLC) has also summoned the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission and the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG) to appear before it today, January 13, 2022 for a hearing of the issues in dispute.
UTAG has for some time now been demanding the implementation of the 2012 Single Spine package which places entry-level lecturers on a salary equivalent of US$2,084 while the current level places lecturers’ salaries around US$900.
Single Spine Salary Structure review
Meanwhile, the Fair and Wages Salaries Commission (FWSC) has disclosed that it will commence processes to review the Single Spine Salary Structure this year.
This comes on the back of calls from analysts requesting for a review of the structure after ten years of its implementation, due to some discrepancies and the burden it puts on the government’s expenditure.
However, the FWSC disclosed it cannot on its own, undertake the implementation of the review process.
The Acting Director, Research, Monitoring and Evaluation and Head of Public Affairs at the FWSC, Earl Ankrah, explained that the consultants FWSC has brought together for the single spine pay policy gives it a recommendation that it’ll become necessary to review the policy periodically.
“Ideally, we could even have done it about five years, but then, after 10 years of implementation, it has become necessary to maybe look at the entire policy and see the way forward for it.”Earl Ankrah