Be more open and transparent with labour unions – Austin Gamey tells gov’t

Labour consultant Austin Gamey has asked the government to be more open and transparent with the labour unions, who are currently asking for a 60% increment in their salaries.

According to him, this will enable the unions to have a perfect understanding and appreciation of the dynamics of the current economic challenges; and thus agree to a realistic increment.

“Let the employer be extremely very open and let them know of the truth, this is what we have, if we pay this, this will be the consequence and if we pay that, this will be the consequence. So let them (government) make a humble appeal to them (labour) and give them (labour) the assurance that come from next year going the right things will have to be done” Mr. Gamey explained.

Labour unions in Ghana are currently in negotiations with the government for a 60% increase in their salaries citing harsh economic conditions but the government has since proposed a 12% increase.

But speaking to Alfred Ocansey, host of the Ghana Tonight show on TV3, Austin Gamey stressed that “what they are demanding may be too much but it thus appear we’re not transparent and open enough for them (labour) to appreciate where we are, let them (government) open up and let them (labour) appreciate the dynamics of the situation in which we find ourselves and let’s agree that we’ll pay them very well and put in place systems to cheek it”.

He also urged the government to begin to develop a system that will help track the productivity of public sector workers, to enable the government to compensate them (lobour) appropriately.

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He explained that “let us agree for once as a nation to develop a salary structure that is reasonable, that the national purse can accommodate and it can, except that the people will have to work for it and they do know that organized labour is not against productivity, the employer appears to be the one that is not taking the proper steps in accordance with the law”.

He indicated that a proper salary structure that will ensure workers are well paid will also set targets for the workers and that will improve productivity in the country.

Mr. Gamey also stated that the government should be able to develop a proper salary structure for the Ghanaian public sector workers before 2025 to avert further labour agitations.

By Edward A. Ken-Zorre