“I have taken the decision to freeze salary increments for this year 2021 for myself as president, the vice-president, ministers, deputy ministers, and all appointees of the executive. It is our modest contribution to reduce the damage to our public revenues and to help hasten our nation’s recovery from the ravages of the pandemic,” Akufo-Addo said.
Akufo-Addo was speaking at the May Day (Labour Day) celebration under the theme, “Economic Recovery in an Era of COVID-19: The Role of Social Partners”, at the forecourt of the Trade Unions Congress (TUC).
Akufo-Addo also noted that for the better part of the last one year his government has “provided free water for all households, as well as free electricity for lifeline consumers and a 50% discount for all other consumers.”
“Public sector jobs for example have been maintained and unlike workers in the private sector, public sector workers have not experienced any retrenchments or any reduction in their wages or salaries through out the period of this pandemic. This situation will not change,” Akufo-Addo assured organised labour.
National daily minimum wage
The subject of National Daily Minimum Wage (NDMW) has been on the front burner of discussions among organized labour for over a year now. The National Tripartite Committee (NTC) on 29 August 2019 announced an increase in the NDMW to GHC11.82. The new NDMW as announced then was an 11% increase over GHC10.65 figure for 2019 and was to take effect from 1 January 2020.
Akufo-Addo in his remarks indicated that he is pleased to announce that the National Tripartite Committee has begun its negotiations one more time and he awaits the outcome of same.
“I am happy to state that negotiations within the Tripartite Committee have begun in earnest,” Akufo-Addo said.
On the ongoing COVID-19 vaccination programme, Akufo-Addo noted that his administration is determined to do all within its power to vaccinate at 20 million Ghanaians and that in spite of the global challenges over the availability of vaccines, the target of government will be achieved.
“I want to assure the nation that your government is working hard to secure the vaccines so that we can hope to return our country, our economy and our life to normalcy we all so desire,” Akufo-Addo stated.
“Indeed, we are receiving 350,000 more AstraZeneca vaccines from the COVAX facility on Tuesday in addition to the first consignment of six hundred thousand that came to hand on 24 February. By 15 May, government would have procured some 1.3 million Sputnik vaccines. We are determined to vaccinate 20 million Ghanaians, that is, the entire adult population by the end of this year and we remain on cause to achieve this goal,” Akufo-Addo added.
As part of his address, the President solicited the support of organized Labour for the upcoming 2021 national population and housing census in the country. The success of the programme, he said will help government to carry out effective planning.
“With the 2021 population and housing census set to commence on 27 June 2021, I appeal to organised labour to give enthusiastic support and cooperation to the programme as it will provide an accurate and comprehensive database which will enable government to plan properly,” he said.
Source: Daily Mail GH