Federation for Labour calls for emergency meeting on budget

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Mr Abraham Koomson

The Ghana Federation of Labour (GFL) has called on the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations to convene an emergency National Tripartite Committee meeting to address fallout from the 2021 budget.

The 2021 budget imposed on Ghanaians COVID-19 health levy, road toll increment, sanitation and pollution levy, one per cent increase in National Health Insurance Levy (NHIL), and one per cent increase in Value Added Tax (VAT) flat rate as well as increase in the energy sector levies Act.

Mr Abraham Koomson, GFL Secretary General talking to the Ghana News Agency in Tema described the taxes as insensitive, “these new taxes will impact negatively on the conditions of service and the living standards of workers”.

Mr Koomson said failure of government to allow the Tripartite to consider wage adjustment and determine public sector base pay would embolden employers to refuse to negotiate salary and wages increases with the Unions.

“Dissatisfied employees will not commit to high productivity, this is natural consequence,” Mr Koomson said.

On what measures the Trade Unions would take should government fail to consult them, he said, when they reach that point they would decide adding that, “but I am very sure government would take us seriously and do the needful to appease the working people who tirelessly work to build the Ghanaian economy”.

According to him, across the world, governments had committed to mitigating the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the citizenry, but the government of Ghana had done little, leading to the collapse of some industries and job loss among workers.

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