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General News of Friday, 18 April 2014

Source: Graphic Online

National Development Plan is a must - Labour union

The Central Regional Secretary of the Council of Labour, Mr. Samuel Kweku Doughan, on Thursday, joined calls for the institution of a National Developmental Plan and Economic Structural Policy for the country.

He said the trend where every government worked according to its own manifesto, thereby neglecting the previous government’s efforts irrespective of their importance was doing the country a disservice, hence the need for the plan.

Mr. Doughan was addressing a meeting of the Cape Coast Metropolitan Council of Labour on Cape Coast labour front issues ahead of May Day which will be celebrated under the theme, “Ghana’s Economy: a concern for all.”

He said the country was often compared with Malaysia, which had its independence the same year as Ghana, but said that critics fail to realize that one of the reasons behind Malaysia’s success story was its National Development Plan.

Mr. Doughan said the fall in the value of the cedi, 14 percent inflation and removal of subsidy on fuel had made living conditions unbearable and that the average Ghanaian was going through hardship.

He said unemployment had resulted in the formation of the Unemployed Graduates Association and urged the government to create jobs for the teeming unemployed youth.

“The government of the day should do everything possible to fix the economy to suit everyone,” he said.

The National Chairperson of the Women’s Committee of the Trades Union Congress, Mrs. Christiana Carl-Oparebea said the Union was working in channeling problems of its members to the responsible government bodies.

She said apathy had set in some local and regional unions, and urged members not to be concerned about their salary alone, but also other issues like the downsizing of government employees, as well as reviving their meetings to strengthen the union.

The Regional Council of Labour Chairman, Mr. Ben Brown, advised workers to eschew bad work practices in order to justify their fight for better conditions of service.

Some members suggested the reintroduction of automatic adjustment of salaries while others called on the government to value its employees and reconsider its actions that were not helping production.

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