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Business News of Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Source: Daily Guide

TUC Merges Weak Unions

The Ghana Trade Union Congress (GTUC) has announced plans to merge a number of workers’ unions that are not functioning to make them more effective.

Kofi Asamoah, Secretary General of GTUC, said the union had issued a general directive to ensure that workers’ unions of the same employer were united into a single group to position them to champion their objectives.

“If there are any two different unions with one employer we would encourage them to merge,” Mr Asamoah told journalists last Thursday after addressing the 10th Quadrennial Delegates Conference of the Railway Enginemen’s Union, under the theme “Revamping the Railway sector, the impact on the national economy.”

There are about 18 unions who are members of the mother body the GTUC.

In his keynote address, he advised the Railways Enginemen’s Union (REU) to join forces with the Railways Workers Union (RWU) to form a single union which would assist government to revamp the beleaguered Ghana Railway Company Limited.

Mr. Asamoah pointed out that two unions cannot exist in the GRCL and compete for resources considering the present state of the company.

As a first step, he urged the Railway Enginemen’s Union to take a decision on the merger with its rival union ahead of the GTUC’s quadrennial conference which would take place before the end of this year.

It would be recalled that during the 9th Quadrennial National Delegates Conference of the Ghana Railway Workers Union held at Apowa at Takoradi in the Western Region, Mr Asamoah, the then acting Secretary General of the TUC, called on the two unions to unite and to put their resources together.

He noted that the split was an indication of disunity and that no union would thrive on disunity.

Mr Asamoah pointed out that unionists who sacrificed their lives and freedom to build the movement did so on the principles of unity, cooperation, collectivism, solidarity and democracy.

According to him, unions thrive well during democratic regimes because they are able to defend the rights and freedom of members.

He further urged them to exhaustively discuss the entrenched problems in the resuscitation of the railways, irregular payment of salaries, among others.

However, a year later, the issue seems not to have been solved.

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