General Regional

Fair wages staff threaten to strike over single spine

Workers of the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission are threatening a full blown strike if they are not migrated onto the single spine salary structure by next week Monday.

The workers are three days into a sit down strike over management’s reluctance to facilitate the migration and offer them improved conditions of service.

The staff say they have been shortchanged as other public sector workers enjoy higher salaries.

Spokesperson for the concerned staff of the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission, Emmanuel Nutsugah, said things are generally tough for their members hence the decision.

“It has led to untold hardships. A lot of people are complaining. When you come to work, people complain that things are bad. We believe that this is not fair. If you are granting increment for every public sector worker, we also deserve same. We may consider embarking on a full blown strike. This is just a sit down strike, as you can see staff are currently not working.”

“The staff are sitting down and work has come to a standstill. This is just a third day of our strike action, but if by next week we don’t hear anything concrete from our management or the right authorities, we may consider a full blown strike action,” he added.

The staff have refused to work until their concerns are addressed.

The Constitutional Review Commission recommended that salaries and conditions of service for the staff at the Commission be determined by Parliament to avoid any conflict of interest.

The workers argue that if management is failing to involve them in the processes, then complying with the constitutional review commission’s recommendation would be best.

SSSS introduced in 2010 to ensure salary equity

Launched in 2010, the SSSS was to promote equity within the public sector by ensuring that public sector workers received equal salaries for equal work done.

Implementation of the policy experienced some setbacks during its initial stages with intense agitation from public sector workers who complained about some disparities in the policy.

The issues were subsequently rectified, but the agitations have not ended.

Some analysts have attributed the country’s expenditure overruns to the inefficiencies regarding implementation and management of the pay policy.

Public sector workers paid GHc14.4 billion in 2017

The public sector wage bill continues to be the biggest threat to government expenditure.

A recent analysis by the Graphic Business newspaper revealed that wages and salaries for public sector employees consume almost half of all taxes collected every year.

The newspaper reported that in 2017, about GHc14.4 billion was paid to some 650,000 workers.

Single spine salary structure to be reviewed – Nana Addo

Meanwhile, the government has promised review the single spine salary structure.

President Akufo-Addo said the review would take into consideration productivity, comparative salary standards in the private sector, and international salary standards among other factors.

“As we seek to establish a world-class labor force comparable to any in the world, we must address the concerns of workers in the public sector over their remuneration. An inter-ministerial committee is being established by the Ministries of Employment and Labour Relations and Finance, to undertake the review of the single spine pay policy and make recommendations for implementation by the government,” he added.

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