President Akufo-Addo has revealed that the government is committed to finding satisfactory solutions to the ongoing labour issues involving the University Teachers Association Ghana (UTAG).
According to him, relevant stakeholders along with government are working to bring finality to concerns raised by the striking association. President Akufo-Addo explained that it is important that lectures on the various university campuses resume to restore academic activities.
“In the wake of the recent six weeks strike by UTAG, the government is determined to find a satisfactory solution to this impasse and ensure that the academic calendar is not substantially derailed. The best form of negotiation is that both parties of the dispute exhibit good faith within the context of what is affordable and equitable. I continue to hope the government will help bring this impasse to an end so that the education of our young people can resume in solemnity”.President Akufo-Addo
Speaking at the opening of the labour conference in Koforidua on Monday February 28, 2022, on the theme: ‘Strengthening Tripartism for peaceful labour relations and resilient economy’, President Akufo-Addo appealed to the various labour unions and the business community to stand “should to shoulder with my government” as it works to return the nation onto the path of progress and prosperity within the confines of open democratic institutions.
President Akufo-Addo indicated that government has equally introduced a number of economic measures including the YouStart initiative, which he noted have been introduced to build the economy to benefit all Ghanaians.
“I am a firm personal believer in our national potential. I have no doubt that we have in us, the potential to rise up and revive our fortune. There are brighter days ahead for Ghana… One such, potentially the most exciting, is the… YouStart programme which is intended to help address youth unemployment in the country. Government has directed financial and technical support towards young entrepreneurs in the country to develop commercially viable businesses and create jobs for other youth”.President Akufo-Addo
In effect, the President intimated that the initiative will be a vehicle for supporting young entrepreneurs to gain access to capital, training, technical skills and mentoring to enable them launch and start their businesses.
Discussions on Single Spine Salary structure
On his part, the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Ignatius Baffuor Awuah, announced various topics stakeholders at the two-day conference will be discussing. This, he noted, includes whether or not the implementation of the Single Spine Salary Structure should continue.
Mr Awuah explained that on annual basis, members of the public sector during negotiations, committee meet and negotiate on agreeable limit of increment. He indicated that once undertaken, it cuts across all groups and unions to avert the possibility of “individual group” coming back to negotiate. Following this, Mr Awuah expressed that when discussions are centered on general increment, they have always had smooth application of it.
“So, anytime you hear of any industrial action within the public space, it is not about base pay, it is rather about some condition of service which is peculiar to that particular organization. But with that of general increment we have always had smooth application of that”.Ignatius Baffuor Awuah